A working group reporting to the Coigach Community Council (Coigach Community Renewable Energy Working Group) has been investigating and researching the possibility of a community renewable energy scheme, with the help of Community Energy Scotland. CES also paid for the recent feasibility work done by Atmos, who presented their results at an open afternoon and an evening presentation to the public in the Community Hall. Prior to that the CCREWG had held many public meetings and over a period of years had looked into wave, tidal and hydro power as well as wind power to see what was best capable in Coigach of generating a good revenue stream for community benefit and sustainability and also thereby reducing the community’s ‘carbon footprint.’
The Coigach Community Council recently circulated a letter of information to everyone on the electoral register in Coigach prior to ballot papers being sent out from the Highland Council. The ballot papers had to be returned to the Highland Council for counting and the results were as follows.
|Ballot Question||As a member of the Coigach Community on the Electoral Roll do you support the progression of a 900KW (or less) wind turbine at Achvraie, with the aim of generating funds for community benefit?|
|Ballot Papers Issued||220|
|Ballot Papers Returned||184||83.6% of papers issued|
|Yes||124||68% of votes cast|
|No||59||32% of votes cast|
|Papers marked “Abstain”||1|
The result allows this Community Project to be taken forward to full planning; which will involve rigorous scrutiny by all the planning bodies appropriate to this type of project.