Friends of the Earth (FoE) has lashed out against UK cabinet minister Jack Cunningham for opposing plans for a small wind farm in Cumbria. Cunningham -- the local Labour member of parliament for the area -- submitted written evidence to a public inquiry into PowerGen Renewables' plans for seven wind turbines on an old opencast mining site at Lowca near Whitehaven. The inquiry was sparked by an appeal from PowerGen against the refusal of Copeland district councillors to allow the project, even though their planning officers had recommended approval of the wind plant. Cunningham says he is "emphatically opposed" to the wind farm which, he claims, could hinder Whitehaven's plans to attract more tourists. His constituency also covers the giant Sellafield nuclear reprocessing site and he is well known for his support of the nuclear industry. FoE gave evidence at the inquiry in support of the project, saying it would be a positive contribution to an area which is being regenerated with Millennium Fund money. Anna Stanford from FoE says she is sad to see Cunningham ignoring his party's policies on renewable energy and siding with well-known nuclear apologists Country Guardian. "Ironically, Dr Cunningham has recently been lobbying hard to expand that better known blot on the landscape, Sellafield," she adds.
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