Senator Malcolm Roberts told a meeting of Lakeland residents on Sunday he was surprised the developers of a massive windfarm project would have advised them there was no government requirement to conduct public notification or consider public submissions.
The One Nation Senator visited Lakeland at the request of landowner Joy Marriott, one of the closest neighbours to be affected by 35 towers, up to 240 metres high.
In a letter from the proponents, Windlab, residents were told the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning is currently assessing the development application for the wind farm.
“They have confirmed with us that there is no requirement to conduct public notification or consider public submissions. However, you can still make a submission by writing to the Department ,”wrote spokesman, Joshua Petrass.
Ms Marriott said the company was not required to undertake an Environmental Impact Study, “yet when a Lakeland business applied to extend its accommodation facilities the council insisted on a very strict application process that involved an EIS and planning that will cost a lot of money.
“I had to do a similar process when I started my now nearly completed caravan park and it cost a lot of money, so I can’t see how a southern developer can come to Lakeland with a $200 million wind farm and not do an EIS or take any notice of objections.”
Wind-generated power did not receive top marks from Senator Roberts. He warned that the huge increase in power prices across the State was caused in part by subsidised renewable power.
A mining engineer by profession, Senator Roberts warned that wind power was not all it was made out to be.
“My research shows that wind power destroys the security of electricity supply because it is asynchronous (not occurring at the same time) and it destabilises electricity supply,” Senator Roberts explained.
“It relies on subsidies from taxpayers and can be harmful to physical and mental health as well as harm the environment, but it can also destroy property values.
“Wind towers are not aesthetically pleasant, but worst of all wind farms are based on a lie-Australian industry is not affecting the global climate.”
In the letter, Mr Petrass said Windlab seeks to partner with the community to bring economic development and investment in renewable energy.