A proposed wind farm north of Lake Burrendong between Wellington, Gulgong and Mudgee is under fire before Wind Prospect holds open days.
Placing a list of frequently asked questions on a website with answers falls well short of community consultation, according to Member for Orange Andrew Gee.
Mr Gee made the comments after a number of calls from residents in the vicinity of the proposed Uungula wind farm claimed there had been insufficient consultation to date.
“I am disappointed to continue to hear residents in the Uungula area complain about lack of consultation over this development,” Mr Gee said. “It’s really not good enough.’’
The windfarm could accommodate upward of 300 wind turbines – enough to produce about 1500 gigawatt hours (GWh) annually of clean, renewable energy, capable of supplying about 240,000 average homes across Australia.
But farm developer, Wind Prospect, has replied indicating “once the initial site design options have been explored and internally tested, we will hold a public open day, similar to the one held for the Crudine Ridge Wind Farm in July this year, to further encourage feedback. Notifications of this public open day will be made via a project newsletter that will be distributed throughout the local community in addition to local newspaper adverts and likely radio interviews.’’ Wind Prospect’s Ed Mounsey said there was much to be done on the huge project.
“Our current efforts are concentrated towards delivering initial wind farm layouts whilst evaluating a range of grid connection routes. This process, to date, has been greatly aided by feedback through our website and through direct approaches from local landowners via the contact details provided on our project website (www.uungulawindfarm.com.au),” he said in an effort to calm down anger and talk through the process.
The State Member said “the NSW Government is currently drafting new wind farm planning guidelines and any company engaged in the development of wind farm enterprises will need to consult with the community’’.
Mr Gee said he had previously raised the matter with NSW Minister for Planning and Infrastructure Minister Brad Hazzard.
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