Claims have emerged that Mr Saunders was subjected to a terrifying campaign of retribution after giving evidence alleging corruption in approvals for wind farms around Portland. Mr Saunders said his family had been subjected to duress and that he now wants a full investigation in to why he wasn’t protected after speaking out.
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“This is basically giving the minister powers to allow for changes without going to a panel hearing,” Ms Kearns said. “We might not even be given an avenue for appeal.” Ms Kearns, she was concerned about wind farms close to people’s homes.
A rule change that allows the Planning Minister Richard Wynne to bypass planning panels and advertisements on amendments to approved wind farms could soon be challenged in the Supreme Court. A group has filed an originating motion with the court over ministerial changes to the Victorian Planning Provisions.
“Last October they rejected the whole thing, now they approve¬ it. What the department has done is to sort of rewrite the whole thing so they can get the result they wanted. It is just playing with words.’’ The PAC noted the wind farm had purchased two properties most affected by the incorrect turbine placement, ruling such purchases had “mostly” mitigated any visual impact on residents.
Developer New Gullen Wind Farm is challenging Planning Minister Pru Goward over the NSW Planning and Assessment Commission's (PAC) refusal last October of a modified development application. The DA sought to confirm the location of 69 turbines, previously found by the Department to have been incorrectly placed.
"The application, if approved, would have significant visual impact on non-associated residences and the proposed vegetation screening would not be able to mitigate the impact on all affected residences to an acceptable level," the decision said.
Legal action has been launched against the company behind a wind farm near Crookwell over turbines built in the wrong locations. Earlier this year, the NSW Department of Planning and Environment said it had become aware that 69 of the 73 turbines at the Gullen Range Wind Farm had not been built in approved locations.
The No Tas Wind Farm group claims Hydro Tasmania did not have broad community support for its $2 billion project and it should not go ahead.
Hamish Cumming, a mechanical engineer and farmer whose Darlington property is near two other proposed wind farm projects, alleges incorrect information about the brolgas flocking and nesting near Chepstowe and Mt Gellibrand was knowingly provided to and accepted by the Department of Sustainability and Environment (now Department of Environment and Primary Industries), with staff gagged if they expressed concern.
Australia could delay its mandated target for renewable energy use in a compromise option being considered by the Abbott government as it faces growing internal demands to scrap the policy completely. ...The prime minister, Tony Abbott, signalled before Christmas that the target could be wound back or the scheme scrapped, saying lower power prices are the government’s primary goal and the rationale for the RET no longer exists.