March 22, 2018

Nundle airs concerns about wind farm in packed community meeting

Jamieson Murphy | The Northern Daily Leader | March 22 2018 |

Nundle Memorial Hall was packed out on Thursday night, with almost 150 residents cramming in to hear details of the proposed $600-million wind farm, which would stretch along 20km of nearby ridgeline.

Wind Energy Partners spokesperson Jamie Chivers told the audience many of the specific details – such as the number and size of the turbines – is yet to be decided and will be determined by the planning process.

Mr Chivers also revealed Wind Energy Partners would do all the designing and planning of the project, then put it on the market it as “ready to build” package.

“We don’t have the capital to construct this project, it’s a very large project,” Mr Chivers said.

“It’s quite uncommon for large companies to get involved at this stage.

“They don’t like doing this type of work, they’re looking for us to deliver a project that they can quickly move into construction.”

A few residents raised concerns that the project could be bought by foreign investors, however Mr Chivers said regardless of who bought it, they would still be bound by the government’s conditions of approval.

Nundle resident Megan Trousdale requested the scope of the yet-to-be-conducted visual impact assessment be expanded.

“For residents and visitors, the actual approaches to Nundle are really important,” Ms Trousdale said.

“When I’m coming back from holidays and I see the range, I feel like I’m home, and I don’t want to see turbines.”

Ian Thurlow questioned whether the project’s owners and landholders would be reaping the rewards of the wind farm “at Nundle’s expense”.

“Everyone is benefiting except Nundle,” Mr Thurlow said.

Ken Menzies and his wife moved to Nundle from the Central Coast a year ago, and bought their block of land specifically for its view of the hills.

“It’s going to affect us one way or the other,” Mr Menzies said.

“It’s not the sort of thing you want to rush, that’s for sure.”

Another meeting will be held at Hanging Rock hall on Friday, at 6.30pm.

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