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Waubra Wind Farm: critics' property bought  

Credit:  By Cathy Morris, The Courier, www.thecourier.com.au 11 February 2010 ~~

The operators of Waubra Wind Farm have bought the property of one of their most vocal critics.

Acciona Energy announced the purchase of Trish and Victor Godfrey’s five-acre property yesterday for an undisclosed amount.

Managing director Brett Thomas said the decision to buy the Godfreys’ property followed lengthy discussions with the couple over the visual impact of turbines on their property.

Mr Thomas said the original developer did not complete a visual impact assessment on the property.

Acciona Energy acquired the project in December 2005 and the turbines started generating power in 2009.

Mrs Godfrey has actively campaigned against wind turbines alleging they cause major health problems including insomnia, depression, headaches, dizziness, nausea and tinnitus.

In a letter to The Courier on September 21, Mrs Godfrey also said the low-frequency sound generated by turbines could disrupt sleep.

Mrs Godfrey was not available to speak to The Courier yesterday.

It is believed she has signed a confidentiality agreement with Acciona Energy.

In a press release issued by Acciona Energy, Mrs Godfrey says there was no doubt that changes around the property altered many of the couple’s reasons for originally moving to the district nine years ago.

“Acciona Energy has worked with Victor and me to help resolve what’s been a very distressing situation,” she says.

Mr Thomas said Acciona was under no obligation to purchase the property, but considered all aspects of a project’s operation on its individual merits.

He said a recurrence of the specific circumstances confronting the Godreys was highly unlikely.

“We look at issues on a case-by-case basis,” he said.

“The key thing we try to do is listen to the community and its concerns.”

“They (the Godfreys) did have special circumstances that we addressed.”

Mr Thomas said the decision to buy the property was not related to allegations about health problems.

“(The) issue was one about the visual impact and having a number of turbines around them _ that was the key point,” he said.

“We do not believe there are adverse health impacts.”

Mr Thomas said he could not discuss the price Acciona Energy paid for the property, but “it was a market-relevant price, determined by independent experts”.

Real estate agent Neville Dooly of Jens Gaunt Ballarat said a five-hectare residential property at Waubra would normally fetch between about $200,000 and $300,000.

Source:  By Cathy Morris, The Courier, www.thecourier.com.au 11 February 2010

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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