Another company has honed in on the Yass Valley as an area suitable to develop a major wind farm. Wind Prospect has put a preliminary application in to the Department of Land and Planning for a farm near Bango. Project manager Scott Evans said the initial application included 18 months worth of investigations.
“We started the first steps on the first of March,” he said.
“We’ll continue with investigations, and then we’ll have more information.”
The company installed a monitoring mast near Wargeila Road in July 2009. This mast has been collecting the relevant data and wind engineers have completed their site analysis.
“The mast has been up nearly 18 months so we would like to push the project forward, if it proves viable,” Mr Evans said. Wind Prospect has been in contact with landholders who will be affected by the application. The centre of the site will be approximately 30km north of Yass and the project manager said it would be a complex site.
“It’s a preliminary investigation… there has been a fair bit of discussion with involved landholders,” he said.
The number of turbines Wind Prospect intends to build will be subject to further investigation, but Mr Evans said that “it will be a major development.” Major developments for wind farms are subject to approval processes that cut out the need to consult with local councils.
Part 3A of the State Environment Policy states that a project needs to have a capital investment value of more than $30 million, or have an investment of more than $5 million but be located in an environmentally sensitive area, to have this exemption.
Once the full development application is lodged, the state government will assess if the specific wind farm is to be considered a major project. The same company have had a development application approved to create 122 turbines near Nimmitabel south of Cooma.
“We’re going through that contract now and hopefully that will begin to be constructed mid way through this year,” Mr Evans said. The company is investigating many sites in NSW, some as far north as Glenn Innes.
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