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Letters / ‘I am 20 years old, and they will be here until I am over 60’

This is a letter I sent concerning the wind farms; one I got no reply for despite sending it to many MPs and those directly involved with the decision-making:

I don’t know if you will even read this letter of mine, I wonder how much words can do in a world full of commercial selfishness. I speak with vigour in my tongue – but it’s the last thing I can do before it’s all out of my hands forever…

I’m sure you’ve had a great share of letters offering you scientific advice as to why this wind farm is a disastrous idea, so I won’t go on about that as others have more expertise on that subject than I do…

I would like to speak from the heart on these matters, if you will listen to me.

When I was in primary school, over ten years ago, we had a debate of why wind farms would be bad for Shetland. Even then as a small child I could hear the words, this company trying to leech its way onto our land… The very thought of them terrified me then, and even now they give me this horrible dread in my stomach.

How is it, that this untouched place will become a farm for your machines? When have we ever had a say – all I hear about is the money! Never of the heart and the history this place gives us, how you’re reluctant to scar the land…

Articles tell of how much Shetland will gain – when we all know fine well we will be getting none of it. Just the landowners, who are foaming at the mouth for this disaster to take place.

Have you ever travelled up The Kames? Quiet, on a dark misty night. The way the land encapsulates itself when the moon is shining down is quite eerie… there is a lake that reflects the sky and stars, the land that our ancestors walked and saw all those many years ago. Never again will we have these sentiments. Just look at the red eyes staring at us from the skies.

From all over to the south end of Shetland (as Shetland is only 70 miles long) we will see them, grossly disproportionate they are, why must they be so big?

I speak with dread, negativity, call me biased. But you don’t live here. You don’t have Shetland blood in your body. You don’t have a granny and granddad who are born here, you don’t know what the birds sound like at 4am when you’ve just woken up, thinking about the sound – the horrible sound that we will be forever subjected to. I’m sure those who are gone long ago will be turning in their graves at the thought of this.

We can’t just run away, there will be nowhere for us to go. My quiet peaceful land won’t be that forever, something I was hoping for until the day I die.

Metal beasts will stare at us from all aspects of land, drones, bleeding us of the air we breathe. When I have children I’ll have to tell them that Shetland never used to be like this. It was a quiet place, filled with nature and the natural sound of the air and sea all together…

But it will be done with, and it will allow people to have more money in their pockets. You think of it as disposable land, but what you are doing is making the humans and animals here disposable too. Renewable power is not bad in this day and age, but there should be a reconsideration, a thought to us who live and breathe here.

I hope you have taken the time to read this far.

Please don’t let this project continue. Please reconsider, for my ancestors, for my brother and sister, my mam and dad, for my future children, for the animals that live here, for the skies and the wellbeing of our land… If you allow access to this project, it will never stop. Our whole island will become a wind machine.

For everything. Please don’t proceed with this project.

Shannon Leslie
Voe

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