December 7, 2017

Wind farm at a standstill

The Bunyip |

Neighbouring residents of the proposed Twin Creek Wind Farm have been left in the lurch after a house was approved on the boundary of the proposed site, bringing the project to a standstill.

The wind farm, located just north of Kapunda on a 5600 hectare site on Light Regional, Goyder and Mid Murray council land, is proposed to comprise roughly 50 turbines, each 180 metres high.

Renewal Energy Solutions (RES), which is behind the proposed wind farm, stated the application was submitted to the State Commission Assessment Panel (SCAP) in July.

However, the project is now at a halt because the Regional Council of Goyder approved a dwelling on the site’s boundary.

RES Australia development project manager Daniel Leahy said the matter will now go before the courts, as the dwelling application process was not handled correctly.

“The site was submitted to planning in July this year, (and) after we lodged the development application we were notified by SCAP that a neighbouring resident had submitted an application for a dwelling, a house, on the boundary of the wind farm,” he said.

“As the wind farm planners, we have to work out where all the houses are, do a turbine layout design and work out what all the likely acoustic impacts are.

“We got in contact with council and said ‘this is the first that we have heard of this dwelling, can you give us some information’, which they did.

“The only avenue we have is to seek out a court order for the application to be redetermined in the proper manner, with the proper notification, right address and neighbour notification.”

Mr Leahy said he won’t expect an update on the project’s application for at least three to four months.

Neighbouring resident Mary Morris, who is opposed to the development, said RES has been secretive throughout the entire process, and locals have been kept in the dark.

“Communication has been pretty poor, they have been keeping everything under the radar,” she said.

“For example, they have a community information session, but you’ll only hear about it a few days ahead because of a notice in the paper.

“When you go to these sessions they lay a few of their plans out, but you can’t take them, or maps, home, and they only have a few things on their website, but that is out of date.

“They are just keeping it really quiet, and under the radar, because they don’t want public scrutiny on this project because it has so many flaws and it won’t get through proper public consultation.”

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