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La Lal environment group plots wind-farm alarm

A group that is lobbying for independent noise testing at Moorabool’s Lal Lal wind-energy station has mapped out proposed turbine locations and neighbouring homes.

Lal Lal Environment Protection Association spokesman John McMahon said it was “grossly irresponsible” that no independent body was in charge of monitoring noise levels for such projects.

WestWind’s 64-turbine Lal Lal development was approved by then planning minister Justin Madden in 2010.

The company has until April 2017 to build the turbines.

“No one other than the wind companies themselves are measuring the noise levels,’’ Mr McMahon said.

“They’re meant to measure them and rectify any infringements, but they have no incentive to do so.”

Mr McMahon said the newly formed association had a handful of members, with a few dozen informal supporters looking to get involved.

‘‘The health of nearby residents needs to be better considered,” Mr McMahon said.

“There’s concern about the potential danger of audible wind facility noise and infrasound to neighbours, and more research is needed on its effects.”

But Moorabool Environment Group president Rose De La Cruz said there was no evidence that wind farms caused medical problems.

“I’m very much in favour of wind energy as it’s clean and freely available,” she said. “There are some who have anecdotal evidence of headaches and the like, but these have not been proved to be caused by wind turbines.”