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Complaints delay windfarm’s consents  

Credit:  ALAN WOOD | The Dominion Post | Timaru Herald | 13/09/2014 | www.stuff.co.nz ~~

NZ Windfarms is still battling to get changes to consents for its North Island Te Rere Hau wind farm that has been the subject of hundreds of noise complaints.

The NZX-listed wind-turbine operator said the Palmerston North City Council had not accepted an application for changes in some conditions to the land-use consent for the Te Rere Hau wind farm.

The 97-turbine, 48.5-megawatt operation is on the Tararua Range overlooking Palmerston North.

The company said the consent application, submitted on August 28, sought changes under section 127 of the Resource Management Act to clarify technical issues regarding noise output from the wind farm.

The company was reviewing the council decision with its legal advisers.

The Environment Court originally said that the wind farm was producing noise levels that breached its resource consent conditions.

The council had sought a declaration from the court on whether Te Rere Hau complied with the noise conditions of its resource consent.

NZ Windfarms appealed to the High Court, and last year Justice Joe Williams upheld the appeal.

He agreed that the 65 Windflow-500 turbines were generating more noise than the original application estimated.

The city council has received hundreds of noise complaints.

NZ Windfarms said it wanted to bring the issues to a conclusion in a way that met the needs of the community, the council and the company. Te Rere Hau generated 122,556 megawatt hours of renewable electricity in the June 30 financial year, with revenue of $6.9 million, of which about 30 per cent was disbursed locally in wages and operating costs, the company said.

Source:  ALAN WOOD | The Dominion Post | Timaru Herald | 13/09/2014 | www.stuff.co.nz

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