News / Community / Featured / 25th October 2022
Wind change: modifications to wind farm proposal is of concern for Coolah locals
Earlier this month between 150 and 200 locals attended a meeting at the Coolah Sporting Club to hear from a community group, in plain language, details of the proposed wind turbine projects and associated transmission lines.
The Coolah district has been slated to receive two wind farm developments, TILT “Liverpool Range” and ACEN “Valley of the Winds” with a combined coverage of approximately 21,000 hectares. Recently, the TILT (Liverpool Range) submitted a modified application which involves amendments to infrastructure, increase in native vegetation clearing limit and increase in the size of the turbines from 165m to 250m.
The community group, UarbryTongy Lane Alliance, are objecting to the modification proposal for Liverpool Range (TILT) Windfarm, which they argue is beyond the scope of a modification to the initial 2010 project and more comparable to a new project.
Among those in attendance at the meeting were Mayor Ambrose Doolan, Deputy Mayor Aniello Iannuzzi, and Councillor Kathryn Rindfleish of the Warrumbungle LGA.
Locals at the meeting were troubled by both developments, citing impacts such as noise disturbance, reduction in land and house values, and permanent visual changes to the landscape. There was also concern about the environmental impact of construction, including removal of critically endangered box gum woodland and the destruction of already endangered Regent Honeyeater habitat.
In a comment since the meeting, Cr Doolan validated the community’s concerns stating, "some of the assumptions have been a bit breezy. It affects our people, it affects our roads."“We are in an alliance with similarly affected councils, so that we can help each other and learn from each other. We are lobbying states and politicians for more resources. It’s about not getting stomped on.”
On Monday 10th October, Council submitted their objections to the developement, which centres the “cumulative effects” of the wind farms on the community, and asks for the eventual decommission of the farms to be considered with local interests in mind.
“I don’t know that we can stop this – its state-significant development,” says Cr Doolan. “But we have lodged objections which gets us a seat at the table. So that we can be part of discussion.”