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Farmer beefs up windfarm fight  

Credit:  www.weeklytimesnow.com.au 20 August 2012 ~~

How would you like to win a 10-year supply of grass-fed Chianina beef?

Chianina beef is the source of the famed Tuscan dish bistecca alla fiorentina.

That’s the gourmet prize cattle farmer Sam Walker will offer to anyone – ideally a lawyer with planning or environmental expertise – who can help in a last-ditch legal fight to stop a 52-turbine windfarm being built 200m from his fenceline and his prized herd.

On the strength of a planning permit issued eight years ago, long before tougher guidelines were introduced by Victoria’s Baillieu government, Japanese company Mitsui has finally started preliminary works on its Bald Hills windfarm in South Gippsland.

The windfarm was temporarily stymied in 2006 when the Howard government used the threatened status of the orange-bellied parrot to block the project, later reversing its position. The elusive parrot had not been seen at the site for 50 years.

The new Victorian guidelines, introduced last year, would stop the Bald Hills windfarm as currently planned, but they are not retrospective to previously approved projects.

Mr Walker is still hopeful that some other legal route can be found to minimise the windfarm’s impact on his adjacent property.

Mr Walker would be happy for Mitsui to build the windfarm if it guaranteed noise levels would not affect the health of his herd or staff and if it would move the 135m tall turbines to meet a 2km setback from surrounding properties.

The windfarm’s general manager, Matthew Croome, told The Australian that its government-approved development plans would not be changed.

Mr Walker will today send his call for help to more than 600 customers who order beef from his marble-white Chianina herd.

At $220 for a 10kg box, a 10-year supply could be worth $20,000 depending how much meat you eat.

Read more on The Australian.

[Click here to listen to radio interview of Sam Walker by Steve Price]

Source:  www.weeklytimesnow.com.au 20 August 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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