In late August, the Baillieu government implemented new planning rules which place large sections of Victoria off-limits to wind farm developments through the creation of No Go zones, and set in place a 2 kilometre ‘right of veto’, whereby a single household can block any turbines within 2 kilometres of their home.
Planning Minister Matthew Guy said he did not believe the two kilometre set-back policy would stop developers investing in wind energy Victoria.
Premier Ted Baillieu has also rejected suggestions the changes would harm the wind farm industry.
However, the facts of the matter suggest otherwise. Already we have seen one project abandoned and a number of others – including four potential community owned projects – put at grave risk.
The Clean Energy Council estimates that the laws will eventually drive $3.6 billion of investment away from Victoria.
Friends of the Earth has compiled a summary of the real costs of this ill considered policy that are apparent just three weeks into the new planning regime: in terms of jobs, greenhouse savings, and regional development.
Since late August 2011, the Baillieu government policy has cost Victoria the following in terms of:
|Lost or stalled investment||up to $955 million|
|Lost or stalled employment||around 580 direct jobs in construction,more than 57 on-going jobs in management of wind projects, and1,274 associated indirect jobsTOTAL = 1,911 jobs|