Donald Trump's bid to stop the development o0f a wind farm near his Scottish golf resort has been foiled

Bid to halt wind farm development trumped

American billionaire Donald Trump has lost a legal challenge to an offshore wind farm project within sight of his Scottish golf resort.

The businessman's legal team went to court in November to oppose the 11-turbine European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) off the Aberdeenshire coast, claiming it would spoil the view from his luxury golf course.

A petition lodged by Trump International Golf Club Scotland and the Trump Organisation asked the Court of Session in Edinburgh for a judicial review of the Scottish Government's approval of the wind farm and refusal to hold a public inquiry, which they claim was unlawful and should be overturned.

But judge Lord Doherty has rejected the legal bid by dismissing the petition. The Trump Organisation said the turbine development is doomed, despite the court ruling.

"Today's decision has not altered our unwavering commitment to protect our investment in Scotland," it said. "We are reviewing Lord Doherty's decision and will pursue the legal options available to us as recommended by our counsel.

"Communities worldwide continue to challenge the destructive proliferation of wind turbines and we will remain a fierce opponent at the forefront of this battle. Despite today's decision, the EOWDC proposal has numerous economic and legal obstacles that will ultimately prevent its construction."

Senior members of the tycoon's executive team, including his son Donald Trump Jr, attended court for a hearing on the issues spanning several days last year.

Trump has previously said he will pull the plug on his own controversial plans to finish his proposed resort at Menie Estate, near Balmedie, with a large hotel, holiday homes and a residential village, if the windfarm goes ahead.

A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: "Scottish ministers are pleased that the court has found in their favour. The proposed European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre is an important project for Aberdeen and north east Scotland. It will give the industry the ability to test and demonstrate new technologies to accelerate its growth.

"Aberdeen is already of global importance for hydrocarbons and this wind deployment centre cements its role in renewable offshore development, further positioning Aberdeen as the energy capital of Europe and a world energy centre."

Vattenfall Wind Power and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group are behind the plan, which will have an installed capacity of up to 100MW and over one year would be capable of yielding, on average, enough electricity to power 68,000 UK households, according to the consortium.

A change to the application in August 2012 increased the proposed height of some turbines to just short of 200 metres, prompting further anger from Trump. Closer to shore, the maximum height would decrease from 195 metres to 180.5 metres.

Last May, majority shareholder Vattenfall announced it was paring back investment in the scheme, calling on potential investors to realise the £230m cost. At the time the firm had invested around £5m.

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