Anger and concern as more than 1 million trees chopped down for wind farms in Scotland – the equivalent to 2,700 per day


MORE than 1 million trees have been chopped down on publicly owned land in Scotland over the last year to make way for wind farms – the equivalent to 2,700 per day, new figures show.

Scottish Conservative MSP for Aberdeenshire West, Alexander Burnett, described the latest numbers as “appalling” and warned the rising number of wind farm developments are causing “irreparable damage” to the countryside.

In a freedom of information request, the Scottish Government estimated that 17.05 million trees had been felled since 2000 in areas that are currently managed by agency Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS).

This is based on a figure of 8,503 hectares, using an average number of trees per hectare of 2,000.

It means around 1.3 million more trees have been felled since last year when the figure stood at 15.7 million.

There are currently 24 wind farms in operation on FLS managed land, with three currently in construction. A further 13 are at the pre-construction stage and another five are in planning.

Scottish Conservative MSP for Aberdeenshire West, Alexander Burnett said: “These figures show irreparable damage is being caused to our spectacular countryside at a rapid rate of knots by these large wind farm developments.

“It’s appalling that in the space of a year, more than £1 million trees have been chopped down without any community consent.

“The sheer size of these developments and the damage which is being caused are making many areas inhabitable for people.

“Having met residents whose communities have been tarnished and are now dominated by wind farms, I’ve heard first-hand how their lives have been impacted on an industrial scale.

“The Scottish Government cannot continue to knock down trees at this substantial level otherwise, not only will areas of historic importance be jeopardised, but both residents and tourists will abandon these once wonderful places.”

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