NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Viking Energy wind farm plan for Shetland backed by appeal judges

Wind farm protest Image copyright bbc
Image caption Protesters argue the proposed wind farm development is too big

Plans to build a major wind farm in Shetland have been given the go-ahead by the courts.

The controversial Viking Energy project had been put on hold after a series of challenges.

Appeal judges have now announced that there insufficient reason to stop the 103-turbine wind farm, which would be one of the biggest in Scotland.

The protest group Sustainable Shetland could yet decide to appeal against the decision.

A Scottish government spokesperson said of Wednesday's ruling: "This is welcome news for the renewables industry in Scotland."

Create jobs

Energy Minister Fergus Ewing granted consent for the scheme in 2012.

The 370MW wind farm is aimed at powering more than 175,000 homes despite Shetland having a population of about 22,000.

It has been estimated the wind farm could bring about £30m annual income for the local community.

Protesters claim the development is too big and would blight the landscape.

Supporters argue it would create jobs and help meet renewable energy targets.

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