Trump loses wind farm battle

The US tycoon Donald Trump has lost his legal battle to prevent an offshore wind farm being built near his golf course in Aberdeenshire.

Mr Trump began his fight against the 11 turbine 100 MW wind farm two years ago, after the Scottish Government approved the developer’s proposals.

The controversial businessman’s battle culminated in today’s Supreme Court ruling, which dismissed his appeal.

In a statement, the Trump Organisation said: "This is an extremely unfortunate verdict for the residents of Aberdeen and anyone who cares about Scotland's economic future.

"The EOWDC (European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre) will completely destroy the bucolic Aberdeen Bay and cast a terrible shadow upon the future of tourism for the area.

"History will judge those involved unfavourably and the outcome demonstrates the foolish, small-minded and parochial mentality which dominates the current Scottish government's dangerous experiment with wind energy.

"We will evaluate the court's decision and continue to fight this proposal on every possible front."

But Vattenfall and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group (AREG), partners of Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Ltd, the company behind the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC), welcomed today’s Supreme Court decision.

Andy Paine, Project Director for AOWFL, said: “This is another significant step forward for the EOWDC. It affirms the scheme’s potential to position Scotland, and particularly the North-East, as a centre of innovative offshore wind power. The project partners remain committed to seeing the EOWDC come to fruition and delivering long-term economic benefits to the region.”

Aberdeen City Council has been working closely with EOWDC project partner, AREG, and has a long-standing commitment to the development. 

Council Leader, Councillor Jenny Laing, said: “We welcome the Supreme Court ruling regarding the EOWDC which is a project with enormous potential for Aberdeen and the wider north-east region.

“Both Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire councils are today approving a Regional Economic Strategy which outlines a ‘Renaissance’ scenario for the local economy in the next 20 years, in which we maximise the recovery of remaining oil and gas reserves from the UK Continental Shelf while diversifying into other sectors including renewables, tourism, food and drink, agriculture and life sciences.

“The EOWDC is an example of the type of development that could help to deliver significant and long-term economic benefits to the region and help to cement Aberdeen’s reputation as a global energy city and a world-leading centre for innovation. This is why the EOWDC has been a long-standing priority for AREG and this council.”

Jamie Hailstone is a freelance journalist and author, specializing in local government and energy issues