Hepburn Wind: Community Wind Farm ‘Helps’ Wombats with Other Peoples’ Money

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Hepburn Wind’s pair of Leonard’s Hill, RET funded “Community Helpers”

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Anyone that’s looking to make a small fortune, need only hand a very large one to a community wind farm operator:

More Wind Power Outfits Go Bust: “Farmer-Investors” Lose their Shirts in the US

Community Wind Farm Investors Losing their Shirts

Part of their pitch (some might call it laying bait for the more gullible fish in the pond) is to throw a few grand at the local footy team (new jumpers all round) or theatre group (new curtains and lights).

Here’s a report on one such effort to ‘win hearts and minds’, by Australia’s most notorious “community” wind farm at Leonard’s Hill in Victoria, from local rag,  The Advocate on 17 June.

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With dozens of long-suffering neighbours, STT suspects that Leonard’s Hill has had just about as much “help” from Hepburn Wind as it can humanly bear:

Victim: Jan Perry

Victim: Marie Frost

And for a taste of what’s causing all the grief, cop an earful of this (Hepburn Wind’s little ‘community helpers’ join the ‘chorus’ at the 16 second mark):

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While the nightly sonic torture is delivered free to neighbours, Hepburn Wind is a lot less generous when it comes to popping a little coin in the pockets of its faithful ‘investors’. Since it started ‘helping’ the community back in 2011, it hasn’t paid a single cent in dividends to shareholders: although, who knows, 2015 could be the year that the ‘gravy’ finally starts flowing?

Let’s put the purported community largesse in a little context. Hepburn Wind is ready to fling $17,000 at wombats and other notable ’causes’, but was it really so ‘generous’ in the broader scheme of things?

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Hepburn Wind’s faithful: looking for gold in all the wrong places.

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During 2013/2014 year Hepburn Wind received $329,107 in RET subsidies.

hepburn recs

That fat pile of cash (in the form of Large-scale Generation Certificates aka RECs) was all filched from Australian power consumers as a Federal Tax on retail power bills:

Out to Save their Wind Industry Mates, Macfarlane & Hunt Lock-in $46 billion LRET Retail Power Tax

So, call us a tad cynical, if you like, but Hepburn Wind’s benevolence looks a whole lot like buying friends using other peoples’ money; lots and lots of other peoples’ money.

Now, while a tiny rural township might get a ‘boost’ from 17 grand thrown in the right spots, that ‘mega-donation’ amounts a mere 5% of the whopping sum it managed to siphon in Federal REC Tax/Subsidy, paid for by anyone still able to afford being hooked-up to the grid in Victoria.

wombat

Thanks Simon, those RECs were just what our community needed.

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True it is that spending other peoples’ money is a whole lot more fun than dipping into your own pocket; and that, as long as the donor gets all the glory, the exercise can be treated as a complete success.

While many might rankle at the source, at least it’s nice to know that some of our hard-earned will help make life better for some well-deserving wombats. Thanks Simon.

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Simon Holmes a Court: a generous soul –
keen to ‘help’ wombats with other peoples’ money.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.

Comments

  1. The Hepburn Head Wombat Eats, Roots, and Leaves… the countryside with toxic acoustic pollution, and a metal, rare earths, oil and fibreglass/resin recycling disaster. And who pays for the dismantling when it become obsolete and the investors do their dough??

  2. As always, great piece, succinctly put. We have exactly the same thing in the UK; giving back peanuts of our own money as – we use the word unashamedly – bribes.

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