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Wind farm warned to change setback  

Credit:  ABC Western Victoria, www.abc.net.au 3 February 2011 ~~

The proponent of a 220-turbine wind farm near Penshurst in south-west Victoria does not know if it will have to comply with new minimum setback distances.

The Victorian Coalition’s election wind farm policy required turbines to be at least two kilometres away from houses.

Opponents of the Penshurst wind farm say the current designs show shorter setback distances.

The developer for the proponent, RES Australia, Simon Kerrison, says the designs meet the current planning guidelines.

“As far as we’re aware, that two kilometre policy hasn’t come into effect yet, so our current wind farm design meets the criteria for the current wind farm guidelines,” he said.

“If the two kilometre wind farm policy does come into effect over the next few months then we can adapt the wind farm layout accordingly.”

But Liberal MP Denis Napthine says the new setback already applies to all new wind farm planning permits.

“That policy will be applied to all new applications and that will be as of the day we were elected. That company would be well advised to adjust their designs to meet with the Coalition policy or else they won’t get off the ground in Victoria,” he said.

Source:  ABC Western Victoria, www.abc.net.au 3 February 2011

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