Upper Lachlan Council has thrown its support for a move to declare a moratorium on further wind farm developments in New South Wales.
And it has added a strong protest against the conditions applying to the Gullen Range and Taralga wind farms which its claims is virtually forcing people off their land.
The moratorium move came from a Mayoral Minute by Cr. John Shaw at the last meeting, at Gunning. Cr. Shaw told the meeting he had talked with local MP Katrina Hodgkinson, who had informed him the moratorium move was in the drafting stage.
Cr. Mick Mayoh supported the move “as far as it goes.”
“It applies to any future approvals. I’d like it to apply to current applications,” Cr. Mayoh said.
Cr. James Wheelwright: “What will a moratorium do?”
Cr. Shaw: “I wish I could answer that.”
Cr. Brian McCormack said the moratorium would give the opportunity for health issues to be discussed.
“The main issue is the situation of surrounding landholders who are affected but get no benefit from these wind farms.
“In my own case it looks like a transmission line will go right through my place.
“One of the main issues a few months ago was the transmission line along our roads from Paddy’s River.
“It seems to me now the line will come across country to the Levels, and then to Carrabungla.”
A motion from Cr. Malcolm Barlow was carried, expressing “strong concerns at decisions of the Land and Environment Court relating to Taralga and Gullen Range wind farms that enables the developers to acquire’ 17 properties (involving thirteen families) to enable the wind farms to proceed on the scale preferred by the developers.”
Cr. Barlow said these decision had “disastrous” effects on the lives of these families. He moved that Council ask the new State Government to review these decisions with a view to taking action that will protect the families from being virtually forced off their properties and out of their homes.
The situation at present that the developer is required to offer to purchase properties ruled by the Court to be severely affected by the turbines.
If the property owner refuses the offer (based on independent valuation), then the developer can continue to erect his turbines in that place.
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