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Group to consider appeal against wind farm  

Opponents of a planned Otago wind farm will decide today whether to appeal against the decision allowing it to go ahead.

A joint hearing committee of the Clutha District Council and the Otago Regional Council has granted a series of resource consents to TrustPower for the project, which will involve 100 145m-high turbines on land north of Lake Mahinerangi, 50km west of Dunedin, at a cost of more than $400 million.

The wind farm’s capacity will be 200MW – enough power to supply about 100,000 homes.

Upland Landscape Protection Society committee member David Karena-Holmes said the 300-member group would meet in Dunedin today to discuss an Environment Court appeal against the decision.

He said the group was not opposed to the judicious use of wind power, but members believed the proposed farms at Mahinerangi and on the nearby Lammermoor Range, the site of Meridian Energy’s planned $2 billion wind farm, were too big.

“Although some of the area has been modified (for farming), I don’t see that is a reason to destroy it any more,” he said.

Karena-Holmes, who lives in Dunedin, said a further concern over TrustPower’s proposed wind farm was proximity to Te Papanui Conservation Area.

Lee Stream farmer Peter Doherty, said he was disappointed but not surprised by the decision. Although an appeal would be expensive, he was “90 per cent sure” of appealing, depending on the support of other opponents.

Yesterday, TrustPower welcomed the consent decision.

Chief executive Keith Tempest said the company would wait until the appeal period was over before reviewing the business case for the project.



2 October 2007

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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