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AFL boss Gillon McLachlan withdraws from wind farm case

AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has withdrawn his ­appeal against wind farm company Tilt Renewables Australia, leaving three others to fight a $700 million proposed project near his Adelaide Hills childhood home.

On the first day of a 19-day hearing, the Environment, ­Resources and Development Court heard Mr McLachlan would no longer directly participate in the action. The AFL boss later told The Australian he would “no longer have representation in the case” but did not confirm whether he would be backing others in the appeal.

Counsel for two landowners and the Eastern Mount Lofty Ranges Landscape Guardians group are appealing against a 114-turbine wind project near Palmer, 65km east of Adelaide.

The appeal is against Mid Murray Council’s approval of the development in December 2015 and Tilt Renewables, formerly Trustpower, which owns 11 per cent of wind farm capacity in Australasia, including the ­nation’s second largest wind project, at Snowtown.

Counsel for one of the landholders told the court his client had been given permission to build a dwelling on his land and that some of the turbines would be visible from his home.

He said those turbines should be moved or cut from the plan, otherwise the court should reject the proposal. The court also heard from Flinders University acoustic engineer Kristy Hansen, who said residents would ­experience “annoying” low frequency noise, due in part to close spacing of the 165m-high turbines.

With AAP