This article was originally posted at the Climate Spectator. View the original post here. Could last week’s backdown on the Racial Discrimination Act offer a glimpse of what lies in store for the government’s plans to take the ideological axe … Continue reading Will a Liberal MP resist cuts to renewable energy jobs and investment?
A proposed amendment to the Farm Management Deposits (FMD) Scheme could see the non-agricultural production income threshold for farmers nationwide extended, allowing those participating to draw more income from wind farms without penalty.
The FMD scheme is a piece of legislation designed to assist farmers in preparing for conditions of financial hardship by providing a tax deductible form of income-banking in times of plenty.
Under the amended system, there will be greater scope for farmers to reserve income from non-agricultural sources, such as rents paid on wind farms, when afflicted by drought or other natural disasters.
The increased income, for many, will be crucial in determining the viability of ongoing commitment to agriculture, according to Deputy Chief Executive of the Clean Energy Council (CEC), Kane Thornton, who noted that
“In many cases we have seen that hosting wind turbines has been the difference between staying on the land and being forced to sell the family farm.”
These decisions, however, must also take into consideration the predicted increase in frequency of natural disasters, like drought and bushfires, exacerbated by inadequate national action on climate change. Continue reading “Policy Watch: Wind farmers to benefit from tax changes… But only if RET remains intact”
“It is based on science and evidence in health, environment, aesthetic and heritage issues” say owners Candi Westney and Victor Oles. “We would be delighted to be part of a community that is proactive in reducing our reliance on coal-based power and welcome the Cherry Tree Range wind farm to our neighbourhood”.
Greg Byers of Cartridge World sees the proposal as an important part of the mix of renewable energy and acknowledges the considerable economic benefits the project can deliver for the Seymour region.
BEAM Vice-President Peter Lockyer agrees “The Infigen project is an important part of the mix of renewables, along with rooftop solar, that can benefit the triple bottom line for our region. There are social and environmental benefits to be achieved by this.”
Wind farms are a win win for communities. They’re good for our economy and our environment. Continue reading “Local businesses welcome Cherry Tree Range approval”
In September, independent filmmaker Neil Barrett released a short documentary presenting the views of people living near one of Australia’s largest wind farms, located in Waubra, Victoria.
The personal accounts Mr Barrett documents in The Way the Wind Blows demonstrates there is strong support for the wind farm within the Waubra community. The personal accounts tell a positive story and challenge the myths that have emerged about wind energy.
David Clarke is a councillor and Landcare volunteer who neighbours the Waubra wind farm. “We need to do something about our carbon footprint,” said Councillor Clake, “and to me [the wind farm] is a very logical thing to do.”
Clarke is right on this measure: The Waubra wind farm produces enough clean electricity for 143,000 households, more than enough to power Ballarat. The farm’s 128 wind turbines offset a massive 635,000 tonnes of carbon emissions each year which would have been generated by burning coal in the LaTrobe Valley. Continue reading “Waubra Wednesday #6 – Locals tell their story about wind energy”
Published by Environmental Law & Litigation. View original article by Dianne Saxe. People who actually live with and host wind turbines on their properties are rarely heard in the emotional debate on wind farms and health. Australian filmmaker and researcher Neil … Continue reading What will it take for facts to overcome fear about wind turbines?
In September, independent filmmaker Neil Barrett released a short documentary presenting the views of people living near one of Australia’s largest wind farms, located in Waubra, Victoria. The personal accounts Mr Barrett documents in The Way the Wind Blows demonstrates there is strong support … Continue reading Waubra Wednesday #3 – Locals tell their story about wind energy
A 199-turbine wind farm has been proposed for South Australia’s Yorke Peninsula. The location is ideal, being in a reliable wind area and only 70km from Adelaide (the link will include a 50km cable beneath St Vincent Gulf).
A group calling itself the Heartland Farmers and a South Australian politician, leader of the Liberals in the Legislative Council, David Ridgway, have been the most publicly active opponents of the project. What is probably their main objection to the Ceres wind farm is the claim that it will impact the surrounding farmland by stopping access to aerial spraying, top-dressing, mouse bating, etc.
HF have claimed that 60 000ha will be impacted. Mr Ridgway has gone even further with 80 000ha. In fact the total area taken out of production due to the roads and hardstands of the wind farm will be about 90ha.
These outrageous claims have been ‘justified’ by claiming that agricultural aircraft cannot operate safely in the vicinity of wind turbines, a claim that has never held much credence for several reasons: Continue reading “Main objection to Yorke Peninsula wind farm shown to have no substance”
I have studied wind power as it is developing in Australia for more than ten years. In the early years of Australian wind power development – from the first wind farm at Esperance in 1987 to around ten years ago – there was practically no opposition to wind farms. Serious opposition is a phenomenon that has arisen in the last five years or so.
What is the opposition all about? Why do people oppose wind power? Can we say anything about the type of people who oppose wind power developments? Can we say what motivates them?
First published by Mike Barnard on Barnard on Wind, 11/03/2013.
Wind farms sit lightly on the land, taking up at most 1-2% of the area they cover, leaving the rest available for farming, hunting, snowmobiling, hiking, grazing or any number of other uses including tulip farming (see below). Yet anti-wind lobbyists and campaigners persist in making the claim that enormous swathes of land would be and are consumed solely by wind turbines. Continue reading “Wind farms co-exist with other land uses: debunking the myth of energy density”
When the Macarthur wind farm, the southern hemisphere’s largest wind farm, was officially launched on Friday it marked the completion of a remarkable journey for local farmers Tom Robertson and Hamish and Anna Officer.
In 2001 Tom, Hamish and Anna began their search for companies who would build a wind farm to generate clean, renewable energy on their properties, 20km east of Macarthur in South Western Victoria.
In the 12 years since then, with long months of challenging negotiations, a global financial crisis and numerous twists and turns there were several times when all seemed lost. But finally in 2011 luck started running their way and the contract for the project we see today was signed.
As Vestas global Chief Executive Ditlev Engel, who traveled from Copenhagen for the opening, said, quoting Walt Disney, “if you can dream it, do it.”
AGL Chief Executive Michael Fraser described the Macarthur wind farm as a “nation-building” project that had the wider support of the surrounding community. Continue reading “Farmers’ dreams realised at Macarthur”