community statement on the Coalition’s wind energy policy

Posted on March 4, 2011 by

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March 4, 2011

In recent years, Victoria has seen substantial growth in jobs and investment in the wind energy industry, with the benefits being shared across many parts of the state.

Wind farms are a proven, economically viable way to generate clean renewable energy, and will help Victoria end its reliance on polluting coal-fired electricity.

However, the state government’s current wind farm policy threatens the future of wind energy in Victoria.

The policy requires new wind turbines to be at least 2 kilometres from any dwelling, and bans wind farms from tourist areas and growth corridors, some of which have the best wind resource in the state.

In effect, this policy makes it harder to put up a wind turbine in Victoria than to dig a coal mine.

A survey of wind companies commissioned last year by the Clean Energy Council found that between 50 and 70 per cent of proposed wind farms would be abandoned if the Coalition pursued this policy.

Wind remains the cheapest form of renewable energy we can roll out to begin to reduce our greenhouse pollution.

We call on the Government to reconsider its current wind farm policy, with a view to replacing it with one based on good planning policy and science rather than arbitrary exclusion zones.

The groups who have signed this letter represent more than one hundred thousand Victorians and include community groups, faith based groups,  unions, academics and industry representatives.

Signed:

Andrew Bray, Ballarat Renewable Energy And Zero Emissions

Dr. Barrie Pittock, PSM, Climate scientist and author of ‘Climate Change: The Science, Impacts and Solutions’

Bronwen Machin, Secretary, Mount Alexander Sustainability Group

Cam Walker, Campaigns Co-ordinator, Friends of the Earth

Caroline Hawkins, President, Surf Coast Energy Group

Carolyn Invargson, Convenor, Lighter Footprints

Cath James, Justice and International Mission Unit, Uniting Church Victoria and Tasmania

Chris McKiernan, Director, Red Star Coffee

Dan Cass, Dan Cass Consulting

Dan Hansen, Managing Director, Suzlon Energy Australia Pty Ltd

David Robinson, Convenor, Locals Into Victoria’s Environment

David Tonkin, Warrandyte Climate Action Now

Dean Mighell, Victorian Branch Secretary, Electrical Trades Union

Hayley Giachin, Yaubula Foundation

Ian Porter, Chief Executive Officer, Alternative Technology Association

Janet Rice, Victorian Greens

Professor Jim Falk, Climate Change Research Director, Association of
Pacific Rim Universities World Institute, Professorial Fellow, Melbourne
School of Land and Environment, University of Melbourne

John Harvey, Executive Officer, Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance

Kelly O’Shanassy, Chief Executive Officer, Environment Victoria

Lauriston Muirhead, Wodonga Albury Towards Climate Health

Lee Fuller, Convenor, Emerald for Sustainability

Mary Crooks, Executive Director, Victorian Women’s Trust – Watermark
Australia Project

Mary Dougherty, Director, Embark

Matthew Wright, Executive Director Beyond Zero Emissions

Merryn Redenbach, Co-convenor, Climate Action Moreland

Monique Decortis, The Victorian Climate Action Calendar

Nicole Morris, Director, Colonial Leisure Group

Pablo Brait, Convenor, Yarra Climate Action Now

Paul Murfitt, Chief Executive Officer, Moreland Energy Foundation Limited

Penelope Milstein, Convenor, Sustainability in Stonnington

Peter Cook, Dandenong Ranges Renewable Energy Association

Richard Keech, Convenor, Moonee Valley Climate Action

Robyn Erwin, Chelsea Heights EarthCarers

Rosanne Michie, Communications Director, Clean Energy Council

Russell Pearse, Chairman, Ararat Greenhouse Action Group Inc.

Simon Kerrison, Developer, RES Australia Pty Ltd

Simon Holmes à Court, Chairman, Hepburn Wind

Steve Dargavel, Victorian State Secretary, Australian Manufacturing
Workers Union

Steve Meacher, Healesville Environment Watch Inc

Tobias Geiger, Managing Director, WestWind Energy Pty Ltd

To add your groups name to this list please email ellen.roberts@foe.org.au