KCDT shared ownership details of Fauch Hill windfarm on planning portal

Have your say on the Fauch Hill windfarm.  Hit the make a comment button and have your say https://planning.westlothian.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=documents&keyVal=DCAPR_145166

Full details of shared ownership between Kirknewton Community Development Trust and the Fauch Hill windfarm developers can be found in the public domain on the West Lothian Council planning portal.  The Heads of Terms are presented by Burness Paul as well as details in the letter of why the Scottish Government encourage shared community ownership.  Don’t let the legal language turn you off.  It’s time to have your say – hit the make a comment button at https://planning.westlothian.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=documents&keyVal=DCAPR_145166

The Kirknewton Community Council have made their views known to planning via the results of the community survey.  KCDT has made it’s written submission based on a mandate from the community to invest in renewable energy for the benefit of the whole community.  Don’t be afraid to have your say even if you took part in the recent consultation.  Your view, alongside policy considerations, is important.  No matter what side of the debate you are on, no matter what the outcome, at least you can say you tried to make a change.  It’s your community and it’s up to you.  Comment today via this link and hit the make a comment button.  Thanks!  https://planning.westlothian.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=documents&keyVal=DCAPR_145166


Kirknewton / East Calder engagement with Edinburgh Airport – erm, where did our schools go?


Attached is a document of questions to the airport, with their response, and additional comment on that response ECDCC EAL Meeting 6_3_17 Questions EAL response KECC response 7_4_17 (1)

Below are some questions asked at a meeting on 6th March with Gordon Dewar CEO and Gordon Robertson Communications Director and their answers.

The airport were asked for additional information following initial questions, which were answered yesterday.


Pop 10 to 15,000

(GR) Weighting Table –we cannot show everything – it’s a presentational issue

Taken from 2011 census data – issue to get population measure, spoken to Planners and Developers BUT known expansions have not been included.  This is why it is a Consultation. BUT we need to evidence the Final Report to CAA

KB Population Density – can we have these figures – has not included East Calder, Calderwood etc

(GR) Presentational issue – we can assure you East Calder is included (The population numbers for Calderwood, East Calder etc are not included in the assessment and weightings of route A6—so must be included in another column. East Calder, Calderwood and Newlands would be overflown on route A6, but are not mentioned anywhere as being so—except possibly as ‘closer’)

RMcG The Chart is wrong – 2 nautical miles either direction, our concern is you have not looked at it properly. GR TO COME BACK WITH DETAIL

We show Kirknewton as being ‘closer’

 Population density mapping was used to assess the impact of operations on local communities, with population figures taken from the most recent census in 2011. It is not possible to include all towns and villages in the decision making matrix. The areas chosen were selected due to their location or proximity to the proposed flight paths. Although not all towns and villages have been included in the matrix, their populations have still been included in our route design through population density mapping.


(GR)  It was captured and included (Not visible to any Kirknewton enquiries)

GR to point us to the PAGE on the Website and weightings in the tables

We did have a response from Kirknewton Community Council, it may have been one of the ones submitted when we were experiencing a problem with our website during the initial consultation.  


These do not tie up. Graphs and Text not back to back – Figure 7 vectoring above 6000 ft

(GR)  We are now using ARNAV/GPS and Satellite technology (At present using Beacons on the ground – these will be discontinued) allows us to be far tighter. We have no control over 6000 ft – at 4,000ft its still in our control.  Earliest point you can start vector is 4000 ft.

We have had to take a view and try to balance it.

RMcG The information in this document is very misleading.  Height is important to Noise – What impact is this going to have?

SMcK Noise Mapping – is it based on theoretical – (GR) – YES

SMcK When does that become live?

Noise footprint, loudness, frequency.

(GR)  Consistent measure

Perception of noise has different impacts to different people. 

GD We are the fastest growing airport in the UK – people make an informed choice where they live.

RMcG Good neighbour – they will have a reason to be part of the consultation.

(GR)  – CAA will decide on balance

What effect will EAL have on these people below the flightpath regardless of conscience?

Noise contours terminate at 70 – what happens beyond that?

(GR) CAA set that

SMcK You set the brief.  We could make representation to CAA and ask.

(GR)  We can find that out and let you know

Noise contours terminate at 70 – what happens beyond that? –

Beyond the 70dBA Lmax contours, the noise from an aircraft will still be audible and a 60dBA contour would extend further along the route.  However at lower noise levels the noise is not intrusive.  Inside a property you would be unlikely to be disturbed by noise from Aircraft below 70dB


Reduced C02 emissions on A6 –this argument is pretty spurious.

(GR) Impacts on design, the greater it takes a plane to Istanbul – not a huge impact.

SMcK asked if EAL could advise what emissions resulted from each aircraft operation. Particularly small particulates (PM2.5 and PM10) and NOX.

GR admitted that these are at their highest during take-off and he promised to REPORT BACK with the relevant data.

SMcK We would prefer the Status Quo – same flight paths- No expansion

GD We cannot support that

A3 existing on P39- A6 needed for Turbo Prop and then Jets?s (will inevitably follow)

(GR)  No intention to fly Jets, we are currently using Tala, we would need to talk to Communities if there was jets in the future.

How many planes would fly over A6?

(GR)  Between 39 and 41 per day Turbo only. There is no guarantee we are only looking at routes in general.

Jets get high quickly, Turbo props cannot manage that. Preference is for A and

Operationally A6 is better than A3

(GR)  We can give you Consultation Material and Route Option Design.

GR confirmed that any ‘future’ population was weighed less than existing in EAL assessments, which left the 10,000+ population expected in existing approved development plans, as being less important than others under the flight path


Gordon Dewar left the meeting at 1.30pm as planned.


Councillor Carl John asked about flight paths over schools – we have 6 schools in the area, and this did not seem to be Best Practice.

(GR) Wherever you fly it will be over schools. We took the findings on population and tried our best. (Several queries were made in respect of current and future population figures, but EAL had used 2011 census as ‘best available’’—which was seriously disputed by all residents and councillor)

Councillor John asked for the map with schools plotted on it

Please see map showing schools and care facilities attached to the email.

(Schools at Kirknewton, East Calder, Mid Calder, Ratho and Currie seem to be missing from this map?)


New populations impacted

(GR)  to provide and place on consultation website with sufficient time to allow public to view before close of consultation

This information has been included in the book in the matrix tables, however the colours in the tables have been changed and explained via the key at the bottom to show positive impact, no change and negative impact.



This table does not include either East Calder or Mid Calder both of which fall into the criteria overflown. EAL includes these communities when addressing impact but the Table 3 does not include this. Table 3 is misleading to the Public, Kirknewton should also be shown as Overflown.  Calderwood should also be taken into account.

REVISE TABLE and Provide detailed information.

The route does not fly over Kirknewton, East Calder or Mid Calder but does pass closer than current operations. As we have explained not all towns and villages have been included in the population matrix.


Labour and Greens comment on Airport expansion in parliament

Labour MSP Neil Findlay – Please watch and share my speech from my debate today on Edinburgh Airport’s flawed flight path consultation.

My full speech is also below in text. (Check against delivery)

Thank you presiding officer – air travel is a modern necessity whether that be for work or leisure many of us use it at some point.

For people living near an airport they know and accept that they have to endure some disruption; however, it is incumbent upon Government and airport authorities to keep the impact of air travel and noise to a minimum and reduce disruption on people’s lives.

Airport’s may need to expand at some point but that should only be when:-
• those airports reach capacity
• when there is an unanswerable evidence base for doing so
• And when actions are taken to ensure widespread community support and real and genuine mitigation measures are put in place and carry the confidence of the public.

Under the current proposals put forward by Edinburgh airport none of this has happened. There is no evidence base for expansion, the airport is not at capacity, there is huge community opposition and the mitigation measures promoted do not carry the confidence of the communities who will be affected. 
From the outset the consultation process on the proposals from Edinburgh airport to introduce new flight paths has been shambolic and flawed in so many ways. Let me set out why.

Edinburgh airport is not at capacity – it is operating below 2007 levels. The airport claim they have scheduling issues at peak time around 7 am. The rest of the time there are no capacity issues. Isn’t it therefore ironic that to address the 7am scheduling issue the airport have brought in charges on airlines to manage peak demand for slots. Edinburgh airport are one of the most vocal advocates of scrapping air passenger duty to increase demand yet impose their own flight duty to manage peak demand. And of course they haven’t been shy to add drop off charges for their passengers. Their brass neck is something to behold.

The initial phase 1 consultation process saw over 200 consultation responses lost, many people not notified of the plan and residents in places like East Calder, Winchburgh, Kirkliston, South Queensferry and Kirknewton advised by the online tool to check their postcode or their future postcode to see if they would be affected by new flight paths. Thousands of people were advised there would be no impact on them so never made submissions. Then lo and behold the phase 2 route options were published and these very same people find they are now very much affected by the plans having just spent hard earned money and life savings on a new home.

This occurred because the whole consultation is based on the population from the 2011 census – a whole six years out of date. This completely fails to take into account the huge number of new houses built in Calderwood, Winchburgh, Kirkliston and other areas. And isn’t astonishing that the developer of the huge development at Winchburgh where 4000 new houses, a secondary school and much more will be built has not even been consulted by the airport about their proposals. I have spoken to a number of residents who bought houses in new developments on basis they believe they wouldn’t be affected – only to find out they now are.

The airport claim 25,000 fewer people will be overflown – yet the methodology behind this claim is nowhere to be seen.

Yet again there is no evidence base in this flawed process.

The consultation process has also been heavily loaded in favour of the airport. Community councils whose members are lay people with limited expertise in the highly technical world of aviation have been asked to comment on very complex documents with no support or technical advice available to them. This is completely unfair and loaded in favour of a big powerful and influential business who have consultants, technicians and spin doctors coming out of their ears. That is neither fair nor just but I do however want to pay tribute to all those community councillors and members of the public who have committed he time and effort to this cause.

And Presiding officer most disconcerting in all of this is how this new consultation sets community against community. In developing several route options they are effectively saying to people – OK you might not want flights over your property so which community would you like to send them over –a divide and rule strategy if ever there was one.

Other concerns include the way data has been presented, the loss of submissions at phase 1 and the failure to fully analyse health and environmental impacts.

But let me be clear Edinburgh airport is not developing these plans in isolation. A freedom of information request I have just received lays bare how they are absolutely complying with the SNP Government’s policy. At a meeting between Nicola Sturgeon and the Chief Executive of easyjet in November the First Minister said and I quote “The Scottish Government will continue to support all Scottish Airports to grow the number of routes to and from our airports.” The paper goes on “We are keen to explore further route development options with easyJet and to support their aspirations to expand in Scotland.” Crystal clear. Isn’t it therefore crass hypocrisy for Fiona Hyslop and Angela Constance to sit in cabinet supporting this policy and the scrapping of air passenger duty but all the while claiming to their constituents in Broxburn, Linlithgow, Uphall, Dechmont and East Calder that they oppose these proposals. They have been well and truly rumbled trying to ride 2 horses at the one time.

Presiding officer I am more convinced than ever that this plan for more routes and flight paths is about one thing and that is fattening Edinburgh airport for a future sale at an inflated profit. That is what GIP the owners of the airport do.





Scottish Green MSPs today used a Holyrood debate on Edinburgh airport’s expansion plans to call on the Scottish Government to step in and halt the company’s flawed consultation.

Last week 20 community councils affected by the plans came together at a summit meeting at Holyrood hosted by Mark Ruskell, Scottish Green MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife.

In today’s debate, Mr Ruskell said:

“These proposals will impact heavily on West Fife. Dalgety Bay alone will go from being overflown on 70 days per year, to potentially facing flights 365 days per year, 18 hours per day, with no respite.

“This unfair consultation pitches communities against each other. Instead we need to agree that this consultation is not fit for purpose and should be halted immediately.

“Last week, I held a meeting in parliament for affected Community Councils. Representatives from 20 councils, across 6 local authority areas attended, and each had their own story to tell about how they felt misled, or ill-informed. There is no information on the social, economic or environmental impact of the proposed routes, because these assessments have simply not been done.

“The Scottish Government must step in and force the CAA to put a halt to this consultation.”

Also speaking in the debate, Andy Wightman, Scottish Green MSP for Lothian, said:

“This consultation has been seriously flawed, the airport operators have misled the public and have displayed an arrogance and contempt for public opinion. Edinburgh Airport, NATS and the CAA have virtually all the power. They got it from Conservative Governments who privatised the airports, who privatised NATS and who created the modern CAA whose statutes privilege commerce and the needs of the private airline industry.

“Are these proposals in the public interest or are they designed to boost the asset value of a company to be sold off at profit in the years ahead by a bunch of faceless offshore speculators? Edinburgh Airport exercises power in the interest of its faceless shareholders in far-away tax havens.”