Media release 11/11/09

Sustainable Shetland – Media Release.

Advertising watchdog find against wind farm advert

Sustainable Shetland, say they are pleased that the Advertising Standards Authority have upheld four key complaints lodged by the group against an advertising leaflet published by wind farm developer Viking Energy.

The initial complaint, dating from May, was made by the group who are opposed to plans by Viking Energy to build Europe’s largest wind farm in the Shetland Islands.

The adverts watchdog found that Viking Energy, in a leaflet issued to every household in Shetland, had broken ASA rules regarding environmental claims, substantiation and truthfulness.

Speaking on behalf of the 650 member community campaign, vice Chair Kevin Learmonth said:

“We are pleased with this ASA judgement, it shows that Viking Energy cannot claim a specified sum as income to the community, cannot claim a specified profit until all costs are known and contracts in place, and cannot claim a specific carbon payback figure as being definite”.

Mr Learmonth said that the ruling “puts a big question mark over Viking Energy’s key financial and environmental claims”.

However, the community group remain very concerned that Viking Energy used, and continue to use, Shetland community money to print and distribute information which the ASA have found to be untruthful, unsubstantiated and misleading. He added that
“What’s really worrying here is that Viking Energy is still making the same claims despite the ASA telling them not to do so.”

Read ASA ruling in full: