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Turbine petition presented to MEP
ANTI-WIND farm campaigners in County Durham will present a petition to the European Parliament this week, demanding renewable energy targets are set on a regional rather than national basis.
Members of The Isles Community Turbine Action Campaign (Tictac), who oppose plans for The Isles 24-turbine wind development, near Newton Aycliffe, believe the county has more than its fair share of wind farms and say it is time other parts of the country share the burden.
At 10.30am on Friday, Susan Fox from Tictac will present a petition to Stephen Hughes, MEP for Durham and Blaydon, on the village green in Mordon, near Sedgefield.
The group is urging the public to attend the handover to demonstrate the strength of feeling against future wind developments in the area.
"We understand the Government has renewable energy targets it must meet but these targets should then be divided regionally, " said Mrs Fox. "A t the moment, County Durham is basically doing it all and that is unfair."
Tictac has conducted extensive research into wind turbine distribution using statistics from Renewables UK.
Results show the county, which has 69 operational turbines, has among the highest concentrations in England, second only to Cornwall with 94 turbines.
Sedgefield MP Phil Wilson, who will also attend on Friday, said: "I am not against wind turbines but I think County Durham has already made its contribution.
"Everyone wants the benefits of renewable energy, so it's about time people share the burden. It is only right that the issue is raised in Europe, as well as in Westminster."
Mr Hughes said he would be happy to accept the petition.
He said it was important to highlight the "unfair" demands being placed on rural communities in the NorthEast.
He said: "Our planning laws in this country do not allow decision-makers to take adequate account of the cumulative impact of yet another wind farm in our region when reaching their decision, therefore Brussels needs to act to protect rural communities from over-saturation."