After nearly five years of political impasse, the NSW government looks ready to finally settle on planning guidelines for wind farms in their state. This is something we've been pushing for since before the last state election so the announcement is welcome.
The Department has released the new draft guidelines for consultation until Friday 16th September. They’re now available for viewing on the Department's website.
On first blush this document looks much better than the 2011 draft guidelines they replace. There’s a possible concern around what they see as visual impact and how close turbines can be to neighbouring residences but rather than granting neighbours a veto there is a process for resolving these. We will need to find out more about this process to be satisfied it is not unduly onerous and doesn’t put people’s aesthetic judgements above the critical emissions reduction work that wind farms do.
We certainly welcome the focus on financial benefit sharing, which is a first in wind farm planning as far as we know. Noise standards also seem to be reasonable, falling into line with standards in South Australia and Victoria.
We’ll give these guidelines a good check over in coming days and give a fuller assessment of them then.
Image: Taralga Wind Farm, Credit CWP Renewables
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- commented 2016-08-27 15:58:14 +1000Snowtown Wind Farm, one of the biggest in Australia, is certainly highly visible from the township. I was on a Lions BBQ a while back with a fellow Lion who lived in Snowtown. She said the wind farm was the best thing to ever happen to the town.