The New South Wales Planning Assessment Commission has approved an expansion to the Capital Wind Farm near Bungendore, east of Canberra.
The Capital 2 wind farm project on the east side of Lake George in New South Wales includes an additional 41 wind turbines to generate power for the grid.
David Griffin from Infigen Energy says the expansion will be part of a proposed renewable energy precinct including a 50 megawatt solar farm, which was approved in December 2010.
“The two wind farms that are currently located there are 141 and 48 megawatts so there’s 189 megawatts installed there now,” he said.
“This new wind farm will see the addition of approximately another 100 megawatts so there’s a fairly significant increase in the capacity at that location.”
Mr Griffin says the Commission’s approval is a milestone in the project but there are a few more steps to take before development begins.
“We haven’t put it to our board yet so that’s still got to go through a final investment process,” he said.
“As with every one of our projects we have to go through a fairly detailed process to ensure we’ve got commercially viable construction contracts in place and that we’ve got approval to connect the asset to the network and a number of other steps associated with that.
“Once we get those assets built, there’s certainly a lot of benefits from economy of scale given that they all go to the same connection point onto the network and they share a lot of common infrastructure and roads.”
But not everyone is happy about the proposed development.
Julie Gray lives at Bungendore and has vowed to keep fighting against the extra turbines.
“I feel absolutely devastated and I feel really, really angry about it, that the environment on Lake George is going to be devastated,” she said.
Ms Gray says the turbines will harm endangered local wildlife.
“We have wedge-tailed eagles, we have the yellow-tailed cockatoos and all sorts of birds flying through this area from Lake Bathurst to Lake George and now there’s water in Lake George,” she said.
“This is even going to be worse because birds are coming from all over.”
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