Letters, June 17 2022

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Concerns about proposed wind farm locations

That South Kintyre is now attracting wind farm companies comes as no surprise.

It would appear that the whole peninsula is to be turned into an industrial landscape, which, when the current ill-considered energy initiatives collapse under the weight of economic realities, will become an industrial wasteland.

The insatiable worldwide demand for energy is unsustainable, yet no political party will publicly say so.

I suggest, as a start, that some government resources be dedicated to the serious promotion of energy conservation.

The so-called Breackerie proposal for 21 giant turbines is the more disturbing of the two.

The site’s remoteness and the sparseness of human settlement there may have led Energiekontor UK to assume that there will be little opposition to the intrusion, but the company may find that it has miscalculated.

The site, as a glance at a map will reveal, is close to the Atlantic coast at Largiebaan, which is a Site of Special Scientific Interest; but that entire coast between Machrihanish and the Mull is special, as those who know it – hill-walkers and naturalists – will attest.

It is the last extensive wild space left in Kintyre, and my concern is focused not only on its undoubted scenic and recreational value, but also on its importance as a natural habitat.

Are the interests of its non-human inhabitants to be ignored in the drive to satisfy unrestrained human dependence on electronic gadgetry?

If the Breackerie project is passed, then the whole of South Kintyre will open up to predatory wind companies whose only interest is money-making.

Forestry and Land Scotland – the old Forestry Commission – is culpable here, too.

Having spoiled the uplands with short-term coniferous afforestation, it is now selling off its land, while, at the same time, rich multinational firms buy up farms at inflated prices to offset their carbon emissions by planting more trees, which is dubious science to say the very least.

The time is coming when all available land will be needed to produce food for the nation, but, given the parlous state of the farming industry post-Brexit, it is hardly surprising that some landowners are tempted to sell up and opt out.

Angus Martin, Campbeltown.

Never leave your dog in your car

It would be so horrible to know that you are responsible for the premature death of your beloved pet dog.

But, tragically, every summer, many dogs die from heatstroke and dehydration when they are left alone in a car on a sunny day.

The large amount of glass and small volume inside a car means that the temperature can quickly become much, much hotter than the outside, even if you leave a window open.

Please never leave your dog in your car, even for a short while. And if you see another dog alone in a car, and you think he or she might be in danger, please call 999 immediately. Calling anybody else may take too long, so use the emergency number.

In hot weather, a dog can also suffer from heatstroke when walking, playing or running, or sitting in direct sunshine, so take your dog out early in the day, while it is still cool outside, and take fresh water and a bowl with you.

In a heatwave, maybe abandon walks altogether, and make sure your dog always has access to shade, ventilation and fresh water.

Iain Green, director, Animal Aid.