Country News, week 11 December 2019 p4 featured an article by Rodney Woods titled 'Solar Plan Irks Locals' - an extract...
"A new solar farm is being proposed for Benalla, but locals whose houses are in close proximity have signed a petition to have it stopped before it even begins.
The proposal by AECOM Australia on behalf of Hunter and Co is set to occupy 9.1 ha at 35 Gunn Rd, about 3 km from Benalla, but locals have banded together to stop it.
It is one of the first applications to be looked at since Victoria's Planning Minister Richard Wynne announced a set of draft guidelines in October.
... the guidelines are only a draft at this stage, and will remain so until community consultation is completed in March next year...'
The article includes a link to the Draft Guidelines - 'Feedback can be made until March 1 at: https://engage.vic.gov.au/solar-energy-facilities-guidelines'.
This is an extract from an article 'Plan Presented' by Simon Ruppert in the Ensign Wednesday December 12. Subheading - 'Solar Application: Winton is set to be the site of a new solar farm that will provide power for 2300 homes'.
"Benalla and its surrounding villages will continue to support clean, renewable energy with Benalla Rural City Council giving planning permission to another solar farm project - in Winton.
John Mills, a consultant working on behalf of Lightsource Development, the company proposing the facility, presented a plan to the Benalla Rural City Council Planning and Development Committee on Wednesday. He told council that if all goes well they plan to start construction next year.
The facility, which will be built at 116 Lee Road in Winton, will consist of 42,108 solar panels, which track the sun's movement throughout the day.
The 15 megawatt solar farm is cited to provide enough electricity for 2300 homes.
The site will alos house eight inverters, nine transformers and eight batteries housed in a secure structure.
The planning permission includes the removal of five large native trees, however it also avoids areas of vegetation and habitat identified within ecological and biodiversity assessment reports.
With several solar farms planned for the Benalla Rural City Council area these decisions are going a long way to creating a cleaner, greener future for local people."
Interested in finding out more? Check out Lightsource BP's Community Information Pack on the proposed Mokoan Solar Installation
Mondo Power's Revised Solar & Battery offer for Benalla closed on 7th December. Renewable Energy Benalla members reported that 24 people requested information about the revised offer at 'A Day in the Gardens' stall on Sunday 11 November, with other people chatting to REB members at street stalls about the offer in the Benalla Bridge Street shopping strip on 23, 24 and 30th November and 1st December.
Whatever the take up of the Mondo offer, conversations about renewable energy with people who in the 'early to late contemplation stages' of moving to renewable energy sources, if not quite ready to decide and take action on this particular offer, are also significant and to be valued.
REB members recently met representatives of South Energy to discuss the proposed Goorambat Solar Farm, expected to have an estimated network capacity of up to 66 megawatts, powering approximately 24,300 households with electricity through the production of clean energy.
An information session in which South Energy shared their vision for the Goorambat Solar Farm project was held on Thursday 29 November at the Goorambat Town Hall, providing an opportunity for local opinions and ideas to be heard by the project.
Information about the project provided to the Benalla Ensign published on Wednesday 21 November included the following
South Energy, a renewable energy developer specialising in delivering utility scale solar farms, will lodge the planning application for the Goorambat project with Benalla Rural City Council shortly.
More information is available at https://www.goorambatsolar.com.au. If you have queries about the project, contact Jo Barnett: Joanna.Barnett@aecom.com.