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Trump Tries to Overturn Proposed Plans for Wind Farm near his New Scottish Course
Donald Trump complained at a public inquiry about plans by the Scottish government to build an offshore wind farm by his new golf course near Aberdeen. The New York developer believes that the 11 200-foot tall wind turbines will damage the views from Trump International Golf Links and spoil the experience of tourists.
"They are ugly, they are noisy and they are dangerous," Trump said during the Wednesday meeting in Edinburgh. "If Scotland does this, Scotland will be in serious trouble and will lose tourism to places like Ireland, and they are laughing at us."
Scottish officials are seeking ways to meet the government's green targets for 2020, and the turbine farm is one of the ways it aspires to become a leader in renewable energy, according to a report by The Associated Press.
When pressed for facts about how the turbine farm will affect tourism, Trump, in typical fashion, replied, "I am the evidence, I am a world-class expert in tourism," to which the gallery responded by laughter.
Trump says that Scottish leader Alex Salmond and his predecessor Jack McConnell gave him verbal assurances that the proposed wind farm off the coast of his $1.2 billion resort would be tabled. "They wanted my money," Trump remarked. "I was lured into buying the site, after I had spent my money they came and announced the plan.
"At the time I bought the land I felt confident the wind farm was not going to happen."
But Scotland's tourism agency refutes Trump's claim; its research shows that 83 percent of UK visitors will not be dissuaded from visiting the country because of the turbines.
"We are both reassured and encouraged by the findings of our survey which suggest that, at the current time, the overwhelming majority of consumers do not feel wind farms spoil the look of the countryside," said VisitScotland head Malcolm Roughead.
The Aberdeen coastline is already blighted by miles of offshore oil rigs since the discovery of North Sea crude in the region in the 1970s. The city is nicknamed the "Oil Capital of Europe."