We are extremely disappointed that even though Tablelands Regional Council knew the High Road Wind Farm development couldn’t comply with Queensland noise policy, it approved it anyway.
I hope the council is serious about enforcing the permit conditions and will insist the developer shows how it intends to address the problem of excess nighttime noise before construction begins.
It’s much better to fix the known problems at the planning end than at the operational end of the development, especially when multimillion dollar wind turbines are involved.
Obviously, this decision sets a precedent for the whole of Queensland and similar conditions will apply to the Mt Emerald wind farm development at Walkamin.
The residents here are faced with an industrial wind development of 70 turbines which are double the height of the Ravenshoe ones and well over double the height of the tallest building in Cairns.
I just hope the same developers in their noise assessment will do the right thing and show how they intend to meet Queensland noise policy, especially in relation to the lower nighttime noise levels so that residents can sleep.
That’s only fair, given that we will also be severely impacted in many other ways.
What also really concerns residents here is that the Mt Emerald development will be dealt with by the council under the old Mareeba Shire planning scheme as a code assessable development, which means residents will have no legal right to object to the development.
We feel let down by the democratic process.
Volker Schwerdtfeger, Mareeba
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