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Fera states case for wind farm

Fera states case for wind farm

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May 14, 2024

WITH discussions ongoing around the creation of a windfarm in the Murrindindi and Strathbogie Shires, the Alexandra Standard sat down for an interview with the people from Fera Australia.

Present at the interview were Andrew Lawson, project director for the Seymour project, Cesare Fera, the president of the Fera company, and Robert Gardiner, “who lives locally and is across all the environmental aspects of the project,” according to Mr Lawson.

Andrew Lawson said, “We’ve spent really the last two years getting to a point where we have a fair idea of where the wind turbines will go, and we’re now working on the transmission route, to connect it.

We need a route between the project and the transmission lines that run just near Alexandra here.

“We’re looking at two different options, one on each side of the Black Range.

One alignment that comes round and meets near where the river meets the transmission lines there, and we’ve got another alignment that goes the other side of Yea, down in the valley behind all the farms, travelling through there.

“We’re trying to keep as low as possible, and keep light through areas, and the towers are as short as we can make them and come through.

The connection of the project, the final stage is above ground, because it is 330kV line, and we need air cooling for that, otherwise you have up to 10 per cent losses in the project.

“It is important that section is above ground, and then we have a below ground section which connects all the smaller connecting cables.

There will only be one line,” Mr Lawson said.

He made clear that the preference is for the transmission lines to run through already cleared farmland, not bushland.

“We’re not wanting to take a tree out that we don’t have to, so we’re trying to work and make sure there’s no significant vegetation that we’re looking to remove, and that’s the ideal position of the project. That’s why we are looking through farmland,” Mr Lawson said.

Discussing the relationship between farmers in the area and the windfarm, Mr Lawson said that Fera is doing their best to work with the farmers.

“It doesn’t change the nature of the farm, so the farms are still open to continue to be farms, with all the same income they’ve always had. But by having these lines through their properties, we’re trying to make sure it’s a very attractive proposition for each farmer, that gives them economic stability for the future of their farm.

“We’re in the process of talking to each of the farmers. You know, we’ve got farms that aren’t supportive, or don’t want the lines through their property. We certainly look away from their property. Where the farms are happy to have the transmission lines through their property, we’re proceeding to agreements,” Mr Lawson said.

He added, “There was a meeting in Yea on the weekend. One of the farm owners came out of that and wrote us an email, and said…..

Image: Robert Gardiner, Cesare Fera and Andrew Lawson.

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