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Windfarm plans blown away by court

Hawkes Bay iwi hope a High Court judgment will spell the end for attempts to build a windfarm overlooking their marae.

The court this week upheld an Environment Court decision to deny Unison Networks resource consent for a 37-turbine firm at Te Waka on the Napier Taupo Road.

Jolene Patuawa, the lawyer for Ngati Hinerua and the Maungaharuru-Tangitu Marae, says Unison has submitted an alternate application for a 34 turbine farm on the same site.

She says the strength of the judgment should encourage Hastings District Council to throw out the new application as an abuse of process.

“The court made a two pronged finding: firstly that the area was an outstanding landscape; and secondly that it was of immense spiritual significance to the tangata whenua. So the judge was saying those two aspects combined tipped the balance in favour of rejecting the proposal,” Ms Patuawa says.

Unison may still appeal the decision.

Waatea 603AM Urban Maori Radio

14 December 2007