Rogue Liberals out-of-step with strong public support for Renewable Energy Target, wind farms

Polling released today shows rogue Liberals who are targeting wind energy and the Renewable Energy target are out-of-touch with the community’s views on renewable energy.

New polling by Essential Research shows 73 percent of Australians support the Renewable Energy Target. A substantial 40 percent of which think the Renewable Energy Target is not high enough.

Q. Australia currently has a target of having 20 per cent of our energy generated from renewable resources (e.g. hydro, solar, wind farms, geothermal) by 2020. Do you think this target is too high, not high enough or about right?
Q. Australia currently has a target of having 20 per cent of our energy generated from renewable resources (e.g. hydro, solar, wind farms, geothermal) by 2020. Do you think this target is too high, not high enough or about right?

Wind energy remains popular with Australians despite an aggressive anti-wind energy scare campaign. A massive 76 percent support building more wind farms.

Screen Shot 2013-06-03 at 2.09.26 PM
Q. In general, do you support or oppose building wind farms in Australia to produce renewable energy?

Poll after poll shows the community supports the Renewables Energy Target and wind energy. Lowering the RET and stalling the national wind energy sector would be a highly unpopular move.

The strong level of support for the Renewable Energy Target and wind energy is not surprising. The RET and wind farms have driven investment and created jobs in regional Australia. The Macarthur and Oaklands wind farms, for instance, pumped $67 million into the southwest Victorian economy, employed around 900 people during construction, and will provide 52 ongoing jobs.

Several Liberal backbenchers will join anti-wind farm crusaders Senators John Madigan (DLP) and Nick Xenophon at an anti-renewables rally at Parliament House, Canberra on June 18. The event is organised by the clandestine wind farm hate site, Stop These Things.

The views of Liberal politicians scheduled to speak–Alby Schultz, Craig Kelly and Chris Back–are contradictory to those held by senior shadow ministers Greg Hunt and Ian Macfarlane. They are also contrary to the views of Coalition voters. Some 64 percent of which believe the RET is either ‘not high enough’ or ‘about right,’ and 71 percent support more wind energy.

This scare campaign has real implications. Politicians who buy into the misinformation spruiked by anti-wind farm campaigners are putting jobs, investment and all the other benefits of wind energy at risk. Uncertainty surrounding the RET has already cost jobs in the wind energy sector. The Portland-based wind-turbine tower manufacturer Keppel Prince has laid off 45 wind workers.

If the Liberal Party intends to continue to support the RET and development of wind energy after the September election, then the leadership of the party must come out and distance themselves from those MPs who are joining the ‘wind farm fraud’ rally in Canberra.

9 thoughts on “Rogue Liberals out-of-step with strong public support for Renewable Energy Target, wind farms

  1. Essential Research should ask the question – Would you like a 150+metre tall wind turbine within 800m of your home? I am sure the answer would be very different!

    1. Gerard, I wouldnt mind in the least! I live opposite a factory which operates a large refrigeration unit 24/7. This is no more than 50 metres away, at fiirst I was at my wits end not sleeping and worrying about it. Then my body adjusted and I now longer notice it at all. This is the same for many many people that live close to highways, railways, industry etc. I imagine a lot of the noise would be far more disruptive than a wind turbine. It is a matter of mind over matter! I suspect the coal lobby is behind all the nonsense that has been spread around regarding health effects.

      1. I am not that worried about noise although others would be and it may impact on their health for me and many others who live in beautiful rural areas it has always been about aesthetics and that is why a 2km buffer offers some reassurance.

  2. Gerard, many have no rights with regard to a neighbour building out ones view. So why would anyone have a right to reject a large wind turbine that has no more ‘presence’ than that already existing in the background?

    They do however look majestic.

    If I lived in a community with wind farms, I’d be pleased to know that it employed many Australians in its design, engineering, fabrication, installation and commissioning. Local employment prospects being improved for rural regions to sustain operations is also a big plus for communities and farmers alike. I think I would be very proud to have wind farms around my location. The community and the world would be better places as a result.

    1. If I lived in the suburbs in a single storey detached house and someone decided to build a Eureka Tower sized building next door I think I would have every right to object. I find the Eureka Tower majestic and beatiful but really it is a matter of scale. In a rural area a wind turbine has a lot more presence than the surrounds that really is the issue.

      1. Considering the gravity of the prospect of climate change, surely worrying about aesthetics is somewhat petty and self-centred!

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