Under Victorian law, a planning permit is required to construct a wind energy facility and many requirements must be met before the government approves the construction of a wind farm. The Delburn Wind Farm has been designed to not only meet these requirements but exceed them where possible.
Prior to lodging an application to build the wind farm, referrals were made to the Victorian Minister for Planning to determine if an Environmental Effects Statement (EES) was required for the project and to the Commonwealth Government to determine if approval were required under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act 1999.
In July 2020,the Victorian Minister for Planning and the Federal Minister for Environment determined the project is not a controlled action under the Commonwealth EBPC Act and did not require an Environmental Effects Statement.
To gain approval to build the Delburn Wind Farm, the project required planning permits under the provisions of the Planning and Environment Act 1987. In December 2020, three planning applications were submitted to build a wind energy facility (one for each local government area, being Latrobe City, South Gippsland Shire and Baw Baw Shire) and a planning application for a utility installation (terminal station and supporting infrastructure to connect to the grid) to the Minister for Planning.
Notices of application were sent to all residents within 5 kms of the wind farm boundary and the information was published in local papers. All documentation relating to the project was available on the DELWP Planning website. The period for formal public comment closed on 18 August, 2021. Anyone who made a submission was asked if they wished to be heard at the public panel hearing. The Panel Hearing was livestreamed from Monday 18th October 2021 to Friday 5th November.
For the Terminal Station
The approval is for the construction of 33 Turbines and associated terminal station within the HVP Thorpdale Tree Farm.
The Minister did not approve the construction of the Battery Energy Storage System, on the recommendation of the Panel that found the information provided about the siting and fire-safety measures for the BESS was inadequate for it to recommend in favour of it at this stage.
In issuing the approval, Minister Wynne also approved the release of the Panel Report. All documents were published on the DELWP website.In May 2022, a Supreme Court appeal was lodged against the Victorian Planning Minister’s decision to grant planning permits for the Delburn Wind Farm.
In March 2023, the Supreme Court validated the wind farm met the requirements of Schedule 1 to Clause 52.32 of the Latrobe Planning Scheme. Copies of the planning application and approval documentation can be viewed at our Mirboo North office
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