General and Australia / New Zealand
Premier Denis Napthine has declared his personal love for wind turbines, but says his government's restrictions to where they can be built won't change.
Dr Napthine on Friday launched the Macarthur wind farm in Victoria's south-west, the largest wind energy project in the southern hemisphere.
Ill wind blows
April 12, 2010
by Barry Kennedy
in Macedon Ranges Leader
Mrs Powell said local government would be shut out of any role on where wind farms should be located under the Environment and Natural Resources Committee recommendations that would hand decisions on all commercial wind farm proposals to State Planning Minister Justin Madden.
At present the Minister has the power to rule on wind farms greater than 30-megawatts but the new recommendations would extend to all proposals.
The Baillieu government has conceded its controversial wind farm policy is powerless to control the biggest expansion of wind energy in Victoria's history, with 1322 new turbines planned across 28 approved developments.
Before the Brumby government lost office planning minister Justin Madden approved about $5 billion of wind energy projects.
The Western Plains Landscape Guardians group says it will campaign very aggressively against Member for Ripon Joe Helper at the next state election.
It says Mr Helper in his role has failed to discuss the community's concerns over wind farms and they are fed up.
But Mr Helper told The Courier he had no respect for the group, who he said resorted to name calling rather than civilised discussion.
A newly formed lobby group has branded the clean, green image of wind farms a myth, and wants work postponed on all proposed farms until their effects can be independently assessed.
“Wind farms have all the appearances of being clean and green but we can’t keep gobbling up landscape at 140sq km every two years,” Rational Energy Debate (Red) spokesman Ewan Carr said.
“There’s nothing particularly clean or green about that.”
Red was formed in response to Meridian Energy’s Project Hayes, on the Lammermoor Range on a 92sq km site on the eastern side of the Styx-Paerau Valley, and Trustpower’s planned wind farm on a 50sq km development envelope near Mahinerangi.
Traditional owners have signed an agreement with US company National Power to build a wind farm south of Cooktown on Cape York in far north Queensland.
The project at Archer Point will produce 120 megawatts of electricity per year. ..."This project is a first in Australia - a wind energy development project on Aboriginal land, with an agreement that ensures Indigenous training and employment opportunities during all phases of the project," he said.
Hydro Tasmania is completing its last scheduled wind farm in the state, and the industry is facing the end of its growth period nationwide, as the subsidy available under MRET runs out.
The industry has some hope of reigniting growth in Victoria and South Australia as both states are bringing in their own schemes to boost renewable energy.
In a statement to the stock market on Wednesday, Infigen said it had settled on the terms for acquiring Babcock's Australian and New Zealand wind energy projects and its US wind asset management business.
"The total consideration for these acquisitions is $23.5 million," Infigen said in a statement.
Infigen Energy, the Australian wind power producer formerly known as Babcock & Brown Wind Partners, fell the most in 18 months in Sydney trading after scrapping a plan to sell its U.S. business because the bids were too low.
Infigen Energy (IFN.AU) said Tuesday has terminated the sale of its U.S. assets and decided to keep them instead after it failed to attract adequate offers for an auction ...bidders have since changed their position due to a subsequent fall in U.S. gas and electricity prices, regulatory uncertainty and changes in the weather.
Wind Power engineer and community consultant Ross Richards said this week that the wind farm, named because it would include turbines on the Tuki Trout Farm, had received plenty of interest from land owners keen to be involved. ...residents opposed to the scheme say Wind Power should either put up a planning application for the wind farm, or leave the area in peace.
The Spa Country Guardians, a group of residents mostly living within five kilometres of the proposed wind farm, said the issue was dividing the community - and even families.
Waikato investors in wind-turbine projects say they are waiting on a proposed carbon credit scheme to make renewable energy affordable in the region.
Wel Network chief executive Kevin Palmer said without carbon credits, the company's $200 million 84MW wind farm at Te Uku, near Raglan, was "less likely to go ahead".
Mr Palmer said the Government's national energy strategy, which is open for public consultation until Friday, would determine the short-term future of wind energy in the Waikato.
Parksbourne /Mummel, Gunning, Spring Range and Taralga Landscape Guardians
take great pleasure in hosting a visit by
G P (Frits) van den Berg
to the Southern Tablelands of NSW
Wind turbine company Windflow Technology says the withholding of payments by Te Rere Hau wind farm owner NZ Windfarms will shortly "become material" if further payments are withheld.
NZ Windfarms had withheld three payments since August 17, and had written to Windflow in regard to each payment stating it intended withholding the payment until issues relating to turbine certification and fitness for purpose were resolved, Windflow said today.