THE Green Party has waded into the latest debate over the controversial Navitus Bay wind farm, saying that the project would ultimately save the coastline that Bournemouth Borough Council says it will destroy.

As reported in the Daily Echo, the Planning Inspectorate has now passed its recommendation on whether to accept or refuse the plans, which would see 121 turbines at 200 metres high – or 78 if a scaled-down ‘mitigation option’ is chosen.

Bournemouth council – which saw its first Green member elected in May – took the deadline as an opportunity to reinforce its vigorous opposition to the plans.

And fellow opponent Conor Burns, MP for Bournemouth West, questioned why the recommendation will not be made public until Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Amber Rudd, makes her decision in September.

But the South East Dorset Green Party has urged support of the scheme.

As reported, Bournemouth council leader Cllr John Beesley has written to Prime Minister David Cameron MP.

Chris Rigby, from the South East Dorset Green Party, said: “We agree with Cllr Beesley that ‘Bournemouth is Britain’s premier resort, and invests hard to compete with the best in Europe’. However, we believe that Bournemouth can progress beyond this and set an example in becoming a town showcasing both traditional and eco-tourism.

“Studies have shown a fascination with technology could lead to an increased number of visitors and day-trippers (Hilligweg & Kull, 2005), in addition ‘edutainment’ events can give background information on offshore wind energy, linking it with entertainment and adventure (Hauschild, Hilligweg & Kull, 2008).

“A good example of this is the ‘Tour de Wind’ in Bremerhaven. Bournemouth could see an additional tourism sector offering boat and air tours to the turbines plus land tours of the associated industry, boosting the current tourism sector.

“Climate change is a threat to not just our thriving tourist industry and the internationally designated World Heritage Site of the Jurassic coast, but to all coastal towns. We have to act now to save and preserve our town and coast for future generations, sustainable energy generation is one way of achieving this.

“We urge support of the Navitus Bay wind farm, to help ensure the continued survival of our coastline so it can be enjoyed by all for years to come. We desire to see Bournemouth become a model for other towns, and stand out domestically and internationally, setting the standard for sustainable development and looking forward towards a greener future.”