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Govt. fails communities on wind farms

25, June 2013

This week Hydro Tasmania announced it would proceed with a feasibility study for its proposed 200 turbine wind energy project on King Island.

This week also marks two years since the senate inquiry’s unanimous recommendations for health studies on the impacts of wind farms on communities were handed to the federal government without any progress on any of the recommendations.

Industrial wind energy facilities continue to be developed under inadequate guidelines in spite of universal support for the recommended health studies from the Clean Energy Council, wind farm developers, environment and community groups.

“Hydro Tasmania could live up to its own words stating that our ‘over-riding value is that we put people’s health and safety first’ and insist on health and acoustical studies before proceeding to put some in the King Island community at risk from their 200 turbine project” said Max Rheese from the Australian Environment Foundation.

“It beggars belief that an all-party senate inquiry made unanimous and clear recommendations for health and acoustical studies to be urgently undertaken to help determine the degree of impact on communities from wind turbine operation two years ago and nothing has happened.

“These recommendations were further confirmed by another motion of support in the senate in February 2012.  

“The wind industry has gone silent on its previous support for health studies.  Hydro Tasmania could demonstrate leadership and corporate responsibility by committing to health studies before undertaking its feasibility study.

“At the very least Hydro Tasmania should be actively and publicly advocating to the federal government that they undertake studies as agreed.  If there are no health risks from wind turbines, as the wind industry insists, they have nothing to fear and nothing to lose” said Mr Rheese.

                                                                           - ENDS -
Senate inquiry recommendations: http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate_Committees?url=clac_ctte/impact_rural_wind_farms/report/b02.htm 

The Australian Environment Foundation is a not-for-profit, membership-based environment organisation having no political affiliation.  AEF takes an evidence-based, solution focused approach to environmental issues. 

The AEF embraces the IUCN (World Conservation Union) sustainable use principles as providing an ethical balanced framework for many environmental challenges.

We accept that environmental protection and sustainable resource use are generally compatible. For more information about the AEF visit www.aefweb.info

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