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A 30 MW wind farm being built in Spain at Tarifa by American firm Kenetech could well be the last wind farm to be approved for the controversial site without stricter environmental controls. The regional government's deputy director for environmental affairs, José Luis Blanco, told reporters at a recent press conference that the wind farm was "one of the last concessions" his department was prepared to make.

According to Blanco, all new ventures have been momentarily frozen by an agreement between the Tarifa town hall, the regional government and other interested parties, including wind developers, until a definitive study of the area and its sustainable wind power potential is finalised. This study is unlikely to be made available until late autumn or early next year.

Blanco's views are supported by the newly inaugurated mayor of Tarifa, José Fuentes Pacheco. When still a town councillor for the Conservative Popular Party, he strongly criticised some of the wind power development at Tarifa, charging that machines erected by a joint venture between US Windpower and the Spanish firm Abengoa, known as AWP, were obsolete technology (Windpower Monthly, May 1994). Blanco added, though, that the authorities could not sit on "an increasing number" of wind project proposals for Tarifa indefinitely and that a solution, one way or another, would have to be adopted sooner rather than later.

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