A South Gippsland residents group has slammed a decision to sell the controversial Bald Hills wind farm project at Tarwin Lower to a Japanese company.
But the move was yesterday strongly endorsed by the Brumby Government and defended by the Melbourne company that has developed the project so far.
Tarwin Valley Coastal Guardians spokesman Tim Le Roy said he was disappointed that the Japanese company Mitsui had acquired the wind farm project through its Australian subsidiary. And he expressed surprise Mitsui had not spoken to the residents group yet about its plans.
“Our rural landscape is getting sold off to foreign companies,” he said. “It just doesn’t seem to make sense to sell off our landscapes … to the benefit of a Japanese trading house.”
Mr Le Roy, a Walkerville property owner, said there were 1500 written objections to the project, and most locals remained strongly opposed to it regardless of its ownership. Opponents of the project would continue campaigning against it, he said.
To date, wind farm developer Wind Power Pty Ltd has developed the Bald Hills project.
Last night Wind Power director Andrew Newbold rejected concerns regarding Japanese ownership, saying it made no difference to the project.
“What we’re interested in is making sure these renewable projects get built,” he said. State Energy Minister Peter Batchelor said: “It is great to see international companies such as Mitsui investing in Victorian renewable energy projects such as this, which will boost the local economy and reduce our impact on climate change.”
10 June 2008
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