The Sapphire windfarm that has been proposed for the Kings Plains, Wellingrove and Sapphire areas – approximately 18 km west of Glen Innes – has been approved.
The windfarm is an initiative of the NSW government and could have as many as 159 turbines spread over the area across both private, council, and crown lands.
The majority of the turbines will be in the Inverell shire, although the Sapphire farm will be the third of its kind to be approved for the Glen Innes area.
Another farm was approved to be built in the Furracabad Hills area a few years ago, and the White Rock windfarm was also recently approved for the Inverell and Glen Innes district.
None of the proposed windfarms have actually set a work schedule or start date for construction as yet, and the approvals remain valid for a period of five years.
Glen Innes Severn Council director of development and sustainability services Graham Price said the reason for the companies not getting underway with construction immediately could be due to a number of factors.
“The company may be waiting for the next federal election to see who gets in power, as there is a chance of subsidies and other financial changes with a change in government, and their views on green energy,” Mr Price said.
With the Furracabad Hills project there was talk of the power being fed directly into a new power station to be built locally, although the current status of the project is unknown.
“Generally the power generated gets fed directly back into the grid, just the same as it would with a household solar system,” Mr Price said.
Planners for the Sapphire Hills project were unable to comment.
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