Scenic views should be protected

November 05, 2012, 12:53 PM GMT+0

A plurality (40%) of the British public think that the Government should protect scenic land from wind farms, according to a YouGov survey commissioned by the John Muir Trust.

Four in ten (40%) people believe that the Government should prioritise preserving scenic wild land from large commercial wind farms, even if this means there is less opportunity to develop wind power in those areas.

  • 40% of Britons say scenic land should be protected from large wind farms
  • In comparison, over a quarter (28%) think the Government should prioritise building commercial wind farms, even if this means some are placed on scenic wild land

Even in Scotland, where wind power has been promoted as having potentially large economic benefits, more people favour the protection of picturesque landscapes than developing wind power.

  • 37% of Scots say the Government should preserve scenic wild land from large commercial wind farms, compared to three in ten (30%) Scottish people who think building wind farms should be prioritised

Effect on tourism?

Although 43% of those who visit scenic areas in Britain for their natural beauty say they would be less likely to visit these areas if they have a high concentration of wind turbines, almost half (48%) of these people say this would not make a difference.

  • 43% of Brits who visit scenic areas in the UK for their natural heritage and beauty would be less inclined to visit a scenic area with a large concentration of wind farms, compared to only 2% who say they would be more likely to visit these areas and 48% who think it would not make a difference to them

Stuart Brooks, Chief Executive of the John Muir Trust said: “This is an issue that cuts across traditional party political allegiances and urban-rural divisions. The poll shows that the goal of protecting our beautiful and dramatic landscapes has widespread support across all social classes, and in almost every region of the UK. It demolishes the argument that concern over wild land is motivated by ‘nimbyism’. Indeed, support for protecting wild land is shown to be strongest in one of our most urbanised regions of the UK, the West Midlands.”

The John Muir Trust is the UK’s leading wild land conservation charity that seeks to protect and enhance wild places for people and wildlife.

See the full survey details and results here