John today (20 June) urged Scottish Ministers to step in, after Highland councillors approved plans to build a golf course on the environmentally-sensitive Coul Links dune system near Embo in Sutherland.
Planning officials had warned that the course would have a detrimental impact on a protected wildlife habitat, and had recommended refusal.
Organisations including RSPB Scotland and the Scottish Wildlife Trust objected to the project.
“This is a disappointing but unsurprising decision by councillors who are too easily swayed by flimsy promises of jobs, regardless of the cost to an irreplaceable wild landscape and the nature and tourism that it supports. Coul Links is internationally important, and the proposal by American businessmen is reminiscent of the false promises from one Donald Trump in Aberdeenshire.
“I have repeatedly raised this issue in parliament, including with the First Minister. Many local people will be disappointed to see councillors effectively doing the developers’ bidding, and I urge Scottish Ministers to step in to ensure we do not allow another golf course in the wrong place.”