Public consultation opens on Low Head wind farm proposed

After close to a decade, a development application has been lodged for a wind farm in Low Head in the state’s north.

The proposed 10 turbine wind farm, which was first mooted about 2008, would be built on coastal land between Low Head and Beechford.

Low Head Wind Farm’s Development Application and Development Proposal and Environmental Management Plan have been opened up for public consultation until August 26.

Founder and director Shane Bartel said the wind farm would have gone ahead years before, it was first proposed around 2008/2009, if there was more government support for renewable energy.

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"The uncertainty in the market, particularly for the Large-scale Generation Certificates and renewable energy target, that's been the biggest deterrent,” Mr Bartel said.

“There are a number of times this could have gone ahead but during the era of Abbott and Hockey unfortunately a lot of interest for small wind farms was withdrawn. So we had to hold onto it until the best time to proceed with it."

The $50 to $60 million privately-funded project was first mooted as a 12 turbine farm, but Mr Bartel said advances in technology meant fewer turbines could now produce more energy.

The farm would produce enough energy to power all of George Town with additional energy for the grid.

The Low Head project planned to “piggy-back” off the Cattle Hill Wind Farm announced last month as Goldwind, a scheme partner, was likely to also join in the Low Head venture.

A poll by The Examiner last year showed more than 75 per cent of voters supported the development of a wind farm.

Energy Minister Matthew Groom said the state government had consistently been a strong supporter of renewable energy, arguing for a strong renewable energy target to further development in Tasmania.

“The Government is very aware of the project and we believe the future potential for these types of projects is positive,” Mr Groom said.

“The strongest support the Government can give to further renewable energy development in Tasmania is in advocating for ongoing policy support nationally in response to the Finkel Review and in pursuing the Battery of the Nation initiative in partnership with the Commonwealth Government. That is what we are doing.”

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