NI’s largest windfarm set for Sperrins

Sperrin wind farm
Sperrin wind farm

A planning application has been submitted for what would be Northern Ireland largest wind farm.

SSE Renewables wants to install 36 turbines in the Sperrin mountains near Draperstown.

The project known, as the Doraville Wind Farm, could provide 115 MW of power.

The planning application also states that minor works would be needed to roads in the area to facilitate turbine delivery.

Twenty five of the turbines would have a maximum height of 140m, with the other 11 having a maximum height of 126.5m.

SSE began engagement with the Planning Service in 2013 and has also held a series of community consultations.

It is anticipated that the wind farm would connect to the grid at the Magherafelt substation.

Meanwhile, a campaign group has warned that the Sperrin Mountains face being caged in a “ring of steel” if plans for more windfarms are given the green light.

West Tyrone Against Windfarms (WTAW) has been lobbying against proposals for turbines at locations across the county, including on Bessy Bell, Lisnaharney, Slieve Ard and Pigeon Top.

They say that if their objections are ignored then some of the area’s most environmentally significant areas face destruction.

At present 70 per-cent of all windfarms in Northern Ireland are located in the Sperrins, with applications for many more already in the planning pipeline.

The Environment Committee of the Northern Ireland Assembly has just launched its report on its Inquiry into Wind Energy. The Committee initiated the Inquiry in response to local groups who were concerned about the impact on rural dwellers of the increasing number of wind turbines.