No trout in Burn of Lunklet because of metals, damning report finds

Trout are unable to live in the Burn of Lunklet because of high concentrations of metal from the Viking construction site, a damning report has found.

A report into water quality around the windfarm site found that the lack of trout in the burn was completely “unprecedented”.

And Waterside Ecology, who monitor the water quality, said the Burn of Lunklet had been “substantially impacted” by very low pH and metals.

This was “almost certainly a result” of excavation at the nearest borrow pit, and a nearby turbine base, they found.

The closest borrow pit to the Burn of Lunklet is the one under investigation by Viking and Shetland Islands Council, following similar run-offs into the Burn of Weisdale – as previously reported by The Shetland Times.

Environmental campaigners have reacted furiously to the report – saying it proves their long-held concerns about the impact of construction on nearby fish and birds.

“This is undoubtedly a shocking report concerning the Burn of Lunklet, but not entirely unexpected,” Sustainable Shetland’s Frank Hay said.

“This confirms what we have said all along.”

Environment and transport chairwoman Moraig Lyall said the findings of the report were “a travesty”.

“A burn that has had a trout population for many years has now been rendered unsuitable for fish,” she said.

“The fears that many people had about the impact of the the construction of Viking Energy windfarm on the ecology of the site have been proved to be well founded.

“Events like this should be kept firmly in mind by those still looking at granting permission for further developments.”

Viking has been approached for comment.

Full story and more reaction in tomorrow’s Shetland Times newspaper.


Add Your Comment
  • Robert SANDISON

    • January 26th, 2023 16:34

    This burn was a major spawning place for sea trout and salmon .

  • Kenny Gifford

    • January 26th, 2023 16:47

    Are the details of the chemical analyses carried out available to the public.? And was there benchmark analyses carried out before work commenced on the wind farm project ?

  • Vic Thomas

    • January 26th, 2023 17:22

    All predicted and more as the Viking Energy Impact Assessment fantasy unfolds. A truly destructive act of landscape vandalism and pack of alleged environmental best practice lies become ever more exposed.

  • Mr ian Tinkler

    • January 26th, 2023 18:09

    That is horrific. Apart from brown trout has anyone tested the tidal estuary (East Burrrfirth)? Have the sea trout been poisoned also? How about amphibia and wading birds/ This is only the beginning, it can only get worse. Kergord river and Weisdale Voe next

  • Mr ian Tinkler

    • January 28th, 2023 19:10

    I am sometimes truly amassed at people’s ignorance and stupidity of some Viking Energy proponents. This survey was done at Scallafield, some 200 meters plus above the tide line, and was of freshwater brown trout. Online some idiots claim the trout were perhaps killed by inshore fishing and seals. Seals and sea fishing 200 meters above sea level! For once I am lost for words, well nearly.

  • Bob Marsh

    • June 25th, 2023 1:16

    Apart from this pollution the visual scale of the onshore environment disaster to Shetland in directing this misnomer of ‘green’ power, and profits south and overseas can be seen in the 17/6 new arial photos of the 35 out of 103 windmills erected at Viking to date.


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