Published 05 July 2012 | Standard notes SN05221
Planning, Renewable energy
• People are often concerned that wind farms might be too close to houses. There are no statutory limits in the UK. This note explains the planning guidance in different parts of the UK, with the different likely effects on the distance from housing. A closely related note deals more generally with consents, Consents for Wind Farms - Onshore (SN/SC/4370).
• England has no separation distance, although noise limits suggest a minimum separation distance of 350 metres for a typical wind turbine. Scotland has guidance suggesting 2km and Wales suggests 500m between a wind turbine and housing.
• The Government has rejected the idea of a separation distance for England.
• There is no compensation for those living near a wind farm. It is not clear how much house prices are actually reduced when a wind farm is built nearby, if at all. There is a compensation scheme in Denmark.
• Two Private Member’s Ten Minute Rule Bills have suggested a separation distance.
• An independent study concluded in 2011 that flicker was not a serious problem and Government guidance has been left unchanged. An independent study on noise has supported their approach on noise.
• On 27 March 2012, DCLG published the final version of the National Planning Policy Framework. It contains only very brief guidance on renewable energy applications.
• Some councils, such as Lincolnshire, are trying to have their own minimum distances between a wind turbine and housing. Milton Keynes’ minimum distance may be challenged in court.