Donald Trump Wind Farms: Billionaire To Appear In Holyrood To Fight Against Turbines

PA/Huffington Post UK  |  Posted: 25/04/2012 07:46 Updated: 25/04/2012 11:56

Donald Trump
Trump is to fight the farms in Holyrood today

American billionaire Donald Trump will take his fight against wind farms to the Scottish Parliament on Wednesday.

The outspoken businessman, who has branded wind turbines as "industrial monstrosities", will tell MSPs about the impact they could have on Scotland's tourism industry.

He will speak out on the issue when he appears before the Scottish Parliament's Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee this morning.

Scroll Down For Twitter Reaction To Trump's Appearance.

Members of the committee are looking at how achievable the Scottish Government's green energy targets for 2020 are, with today's meeting focusing on the impact the renewables industry could have on tourism and local communities.

In a submission to MSPs, Mr Trump has argued that wind farms could "completely end" tourism in Scotland and the country is "in effect committing financial suicide".

He also said he would not have built his golf course in the north east of Scotland if he had known about plans to install turbines off the coast there.

Mr Trump, chairman and chief executive officer of the Trump Organisation, argued that tourists will not travel to Scotland to "look at ugly turbines".

He said that when faced with "these industrial monstrosities" on the countryside and coastline, visitors will "hate it and go elsewhere".

The American businessman urged the committee to "recognise the serious situation and to advise the Scottish Government not to destroy Scotland with these horrendous, costly and highly inefficient industrial turbines".

He told them: "Your pristine countryside and coastlines will forever be destroyed and Scotland will go broke."

However, a survey for tourism body VisitScotland found that four out of five people said wind farms do not affect their decisions over where to holiday in the UK.

The study, which was published yesterday, also found that more than half of people did not agree that the turbines spoiled the look of the UK or Scottish countryside.

A total of 80% of people in the UK who were surveyed said presence of a wind farm would not affect their decision about where to stay when on a holiday or short break in Britain.

When asked if wind farms spoiled the look of the countryside, 52.1% of people disagreed, with only 18.7% of people in the UK agreeing that wind farms did negatively impact on the countryside in this way.

Meanwhile, Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond defended his push for a "renewables revolution" in a letter to Mr Trump.
The First Minister told him: "It is my belief that Scotland's great cities and ports are ideally placed to become a key hub for the rapidly-growing multibillion-pound offshore renewables industry.

"Our waters are estimated to have as much as a quarter of Europe's potential offshore wind energy and we are perfectly positioned to develop the technology that will power this remarkable renewables revolution."

Speaking ahead of this morning's meeting, committee convener Murdo Fraser said: "Our national inquiry into the Scottish Government's renewable energy targets and whether they are achievable has already taken evidence from 30 witnesses, covering themes from the planning system to the technological advances needed to meet the targets.

"In today's session the committee will hear from witnesses on their views on the impact of renewable energy on tourism and communities.

"We will continue to hear from other witnesses in the coming months as we work towards our considered view and the committee's final report."

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