Melina BATH (Eastern Victoria) (18:08): (443) My adjournment matter this evening is for the Minister for Planning in the other place, and the action I seek is for the minister to reject Delburn wind farm’s new application to amend the four permit conditions. Now, the Strzelecki Community Alliance Incorporated has over 1000 members, and 483 households, which will be dispersed around and surrounding the proposed Delburn wind farm and will be directly impacted by the thirty-three 250-metre tall wind turbine development. Now, the reason it does not support the current wind farm proposal is not because the group does not agree with it and does not support renewable energy – on the contrary. This development fails to conform with the recommendations of the National Wind Farm Commissioner, who is now newly named the Australian Energy Infrastructure Commissioner. This group, a very decent set of people who I have had many an interaction with, is concerned that Delburn, the developer, have changed the permit conditions to suit their needs.
This area has almost 1600 dwellings within a 6-kilometre radius of these developments. They are concerned that the project certainly is amongst an area that has significant bushfire history. Indeed the 2009 Delburn complex fires are etched in the minds and scarred into the souls of the people of Mirboo North, Darlimurla, Boolarra and Yinnar.
They are concerned that 19 of these 250-metre-high turbines are within 200 metres of public roads – these are the new proposed amendments. They are concerned that some of those blades are actually only 20 metres off the Strzelecki Highway. They are concerned that there will be an aviation risk, and Civil Aviation Safety Authority still does not consider the Delburn wind farm an acceptable risk to aviation safety. They have no confidence that the levels proposed will be acceptable in terms of the noise levels. They also feel that the amendments serve to weaken the protection of community through limiting the scope of the project boundaries and the scope of the affected communities. They are rightly concerned, and I want to support their concerns. As they said and I have agreed on other occasions, this is not against wind farms, but these amendments to the current proposal are an overreach and should not be considered by the minister.