Jobs and clean energy discussed at community information session
The first Valley of the Winds community information session was held this week at the Coolah Showgrounds to introduce the exciting new renewable energy project to the local community.
More than 50 people dropped by throughout the afternoon to meet our project team, learn more about the proposed development and provide their feedback.
Valley of the Winds is an 800-megawatt wind farm that is in the very early stages of planning. The project is expected to create up to 400 jobs during construction and 50 ongoing jobs throughout its operational life.
It will be located on the hills to the south of Coolah, capturing the natural energy of the wind across the region to provide clean renewable energy to the National Electricity Market.
Our project manager Jeremy Ellis said the open-door drop-in session allowed people to learn about the project and how it could benefit the local community.
“We are in the very early stages of planning, which makes it the ideal time to gather feedback from the local community to better understand their views” he said.
“It was very encouraging for us to hear a lot of questions from the community about potential employment and contracting opportunities.”
“We want to make sure local businesses and community members benefit in terms of employment opportunities. Not only would this be valuable for the local economy and community, but also for the project.
“We also discussed the proposed location of the wind farm and how it could co-exist and compliment the rural use of the land.
“The feedback will help us develop and refine our proposal, making sure it has the support of the local community.”
Register for possible work or business opportunities with Valley of the Winds.
Valley of the Winds will be assessed by The NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) as a State Significant Development under Part 4 of the NSW Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
We are in the process of developing an initial scoping report. After that report is submitted to DPIE it will issue the Secretary’s Environmental Assessment Requirements (known as ‘SEARs’) for the project.
A wide range of studies and assessments will be undertaken as plans are further developed for the wind farm and the transmission line options are evaluated. Key studies will include noise, visual and landscape, biodiversity, heritage, traffic and transport, social, economic and cumulative impacts.
Approval will also be sought from the Commonwealth through the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act).
Our project team will continue to meet and discuss the project with members of the community as part of the planning process.
We plan to keep the community informed as we progress through the different stages of the approvals process. To do this, we’ll be holding a number of one on one meetings and wider group discussions to help promote an open and two-way conversation about the project.
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