A full meeting of Greater Wellington Regional Council has backed the Landcare Committee’s decision to carry out further public consultation on the draft Battle Hill Farm Forest Park Management Plan, as a result of a recent hearing on the draft plan.
At the recent Parks and Forests Hearing Subcommittee, representatives from the Pauatahanui Residents Association and some local residents requested that Greater Wellington give the public another opportunity to make submissions on the draft plan regarding provisions for wind turbine development. The subcommittee agreed and recommended further consultation to the Landcare Committee, who met after the hearing.
Greater Wellington has followed a public consultation process on the draft plan, which included inviting the public to make submissions earlier this year.
However, the Landcare Committee, which approved the Parks and Forests Hearing Subcommittee’s recommendation, agreed that further consultation would be a constructive way of ensuring that as many people as possible have their say, given that wind power generation is a new way of using parts of Greater Wellington’s regional parks and forests.
Currently, Greater Wellington is considering changes to the plan that could allow wind turbines and associated infrastructure required as part of the Puketiro wind farm. Although the proposed site is mainly in the Akatarawa Forest, some turbines and possible access to the wind farm would be on or through land within Battle Hill.
Greater Wellington believes that consultation will be more effective if it is commenced once the wind farm developer (RES NZ Ltd) has more information about the wind farm proposal in relation to the park, such as the number of turbines and options for road access.
This information is likely to be available later this year.
10 October 2007
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