Revolution RoadMap: Fighting Big Wind Means Getting Organised, No Retreat & No Surrender

Victoria erupts: Mortlake unanimously slams Mount Fyans Wind Farm.


Throughout history there’s been a pretty neat correlation between fighting and winning. And, so it is, that the communities that go all out in head-to-head battles with wind power outfits – out to destroy their lives and livelihoods – keep clocking up victories.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

“If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.”

― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

The words of that Chinese Master of strategy hold true 2,500 years later.

The sociopaths that people wind power outfits – think ‘community liaison officers’, lawyers and project managers in shiny suits and shoes that never seem to get muddy – are a special breed, to be sure.

Across the globe, the wind industry has used the $billions in subsidies it has suckered out of taxpayers and power consumers to bribe its way into peaceful and prosperous rural communities. However, when their efforts to win hearts and minds using other people’s money fails, their fall-back approach has all the guile and tact of a drunken Sumo wrestler.

After a decade of more of battling wind industry bullies, plenty of communities know their enemies more than well enough to defeat them.

In Australia, on that score, STT has been doing the heavy lifting since December 2012. Now, just as the battle for Western Victoria begins to rage, a new weapon has been unleashed: DeFrock

Here’s what DeFrock has to say about smashing the wind industry where it hurts.

The purpose of DeFrock is 

  • to expose the lies, propaganda and personal slander used by wind industry proponents to promote and impose unsafe wind turbines on country residents and power consumers;
  • to provide a reliable database to assist those involved in understanding and resisting wind turbines;
  • to identify, and see bought to account, politicians, bureaucrats and purveyors of false expertise, e.g., acousticians, health, landscape and wildlife experts who have given false or inadequate evidence (never given under oath) to planning panels or their equivalents in other States;
  • to assist those suffering from wind turbine syndrome and other human rights violations obtain proper compensation;
  • to impose proper regulation of these dangerous machines, and ultimately to restore electricity to Australian at globally competitive prices.

The wind energy industry has presented itself as a vital part of the solution to  man-made global warming. Many have embraced this proposition. DeFrock notes that this postulation is somewhere between a noble fantasy and a serious fraud.

DeFrock’s principal concern is the present and increasing environmental and human damage which wind turbines impose largely, but not only, upon rural communities.

DeFrock has access to truly independent experts and researchers in most relevant disciplines and will also access the work of the Waubra Foundation and the ‘Stop These Things” and AWED and other websites.

Defrock will endeavour to prepare and distribute a number of key documents that will provide politicians, responsible bureaucrats, journalists and the public with must-know facts about the wind industry in the hope that this will lead to dependable, rational, affordable and safe power generation. Beyond this DeFrock will produce advice to the public on bringing the wind industry to account.

DeFrock commits to use its best efforts to identify and present the truth about the damage wind turbines causes to individuals, families and power consumers.

DeFrock has not sought, nor received, funding from any third party.

Mortlake didn’t just get angry, it got organised.


Objecting to a Planning Application
DeFrocked Blog

DeFrock realises that there are country Australians in every State involved in resisting and fighting the wind industry along the whole chain of the development of a wind project. This effort, as results show, is a lonely and unproductive activity, virtually always resulting in a win for the developer.

Part of the reason for poor returns for the efforts of the locals is that they are slow to realise that they are facing a life destroying juggernaut: that they need to organise and become very well informed; that responsible bureaucrats are great supporters of renewable energy at all costs, and are deliberately blind, even hostile, to the complaints of those suffering from wind projects.

The Process
The development “process” starts with the would-be developer using well-rehearsed partial truth sales discussions around farmers’ kitchen tables designed at  securing turbine sites. This stage is shortly followed by well publicized but small donations to local clubs and charities.  Perhaps even a developer-sponsored public meeting, although developers are increasingly side–stepping these as communities become better informed. For developers time is much better spent in “bending” local councils. The process then moves on to a Planning Application from the developer to the Minister, followed by a Planning Panel Hearing and, finally, a Panel Recommendation to the Minister.

It is the Minister’s responsibility to choose the Members and Chair of a Planning Panel from a list managed by Panels Victoria.

Understand that virtually every Panel has recommended to the Minister that a proposed project should proceed.

DeFrock contributers have attended Planning Panels.

Here are some suggestions on handling Panel hearings. The suggestions are largely based upon: the inevitable outcome; the lack of sworn evidence from the developer’s experts; and the apparent illegality of instructions to Panels.

Objectors should recognise the outcome is inevitable, so the basic objective is to disrupt the hearing by introducing, in as forceful manner as possible: the deliberate lack of sworn evidence; the possible illegality of the process and therefore findings; use of known to be irrelevant noise guidelines; contravention of human rights of neighbours and possible liability of Panel members.

Finally indicate that regardless of the Panel’s recommendations and the Minister’s issue of a permit, the wind project developer and local and other responsible officials will find themselves defending the indefensible in court and facing very substantial damages claims.

After some recent findings by a consultant in relation to noise from the Bald Hills project, the confidence of developers in “deep pocketing” potential litigants is on the downturn.

That said, objectors should conserve their resources and time by the following strategy:

  • form as large a group of objectors, including as many “hard” individuals, as possible;
  • agree that the objectors will operate as one on constructing the general objections common to all wind projects (this material is largely available) and that one person, most importantly a lawyer, will present these general objections to the Panel in as hard hitting a way as possible. Remember friendliness and politeness will only be taken as weakness.

The process of generating permits for new projects is different in each of the States. What is common is that there is overwhelming bias in the process against the objectors and in favour of the applicant. The lawyer for the objectors must make this point as often as possible, including noting that the bias is expressed in noise guidelines, in responsible officials presenting closed minds to clear scientific and technical evidence, ignoring existing legislation where it is in conflict with guidelines, and in press reports and articles.

  • Local objections should then be made by individual objectors. Even in this category, work together to co-ordinate your objections.

In this post the Victorian situation is used as an example. DeFrock is hoping that it will be asked by knowledgeable others to publish prepared material relevant to their States’ procedures.

Learning from the Past
It has been the practice of objectors to spend considerable time and money on their objection, often repeating what others have already said in their presentations.

Curiously the applicant never exposes itself to cross examination, but thrusts its not-on-oath experts forward to make the case.

Even more curious, the Planning Panel members are selected and instructed by the Minister, report to the Minister and then disappear.

Not so curious is that in Victoria there have been about 30 Panel hearings with only two recommending that a project not proceed.

The first of these two failed project applications did not proceed, but the careers of the members of that Panel seemed to falter thereafter.

Get used to labelling Panel hearings as “for show” hearings  and calling them just that. Be firm and strong when presenting to the Panel and remember that the Chairperson, Panel members and the would-be developer’s staff or experts and the relevant Department’s officers are not your friends. They all know the hearing is a charade.

DeFrock notes the following other problems with the Victorian process:

Panels are not independent of the Minister.

The instructions of the Minister to Panels and the findings of Panels is often in apparent conflict with existing Victorian law. Detailed complaints on this matter have been ignored. A future post will describe the possible illegality of the process and the findings.

A particular and seemingly illegal matter is that in addition to the developers, all the responsible politicians and bureaucrats know that the noise guidelines are technically irrelevant; and instead of protecting project neighbours, allow the reverse to happen.

Defrock advises that objectors not play the developers’ and bureaucrats’ game where the outcome will always be in their favour, but try to disrupt the “for show” process and try, as objectors, to construct their own field of combat.

DeFrock advises objectors to start with the standard general objection, which will be outlined in another post, and tailored by the group lawyer.

This standard objection is prepared and presented so that developers and bureaucrats cannot claim they did not know what was going on; and should be suitable for briefing lawyers for, say, a future court case. Local objections are of course where the objectors have the greater knowledge and therefore an advantage.

Always prepare objections on the grounds that the information is of “go to court” quality.

6 thoughts on “Revolution RoadMap: Fighting Big Wind Means Getting Organised, No Retreat & No Surrender

  1. I do not believe that lawyers understand the noise guidelines. The noise guidelines are not represented in issued permit conditions and the resultant operating conditions.

    Saying that noise guidelines are technically irrelevant is a very stupid comment to make because it makes a mockery of the WHO recommendations which are very much the same as that used by the Victorian EPA and the NZS. It is that the EPA and NZS has been corrupted? Any competent environmental lawyer would or should know this.

    With my knowledge, if I was a trained environmental lawyer, I would have ripped hell out of the panel at the Golden Plains wind farm hearing. The process was as corrupt as hell – blind Freddy could see that it is required to be independent of the operator and it was not.

    The so-called peer review of the MDA report was done by Christophe Deleire’s mate. I was sitting behind them asvthey were talking together while Dr Thorne was giving evidence. The peer reviewing is required to be by a EPA-accredited peer reviewer and it was not.

    In the panel report, the recommendation and comments reflected the wishes of of the developer. It was based on two opinions against one. The two referred to are however invalid because they were not independent of the developer. The issues were in relation to the certainty of predictions. The NZS requires that the developer should provide independent wind test reports for predicted noise emissions to limit the degree of uncertainty but they were not provided.

    (The wind test report is the actual sound pressure levels generated by candidate wind turbines – the ISO prediction method is a crude calculation and does not consider the sound generated by the blades as it only considers the generator. That is why it is common for the 40dBA noise limit to be exceeded by more than 20 dBA).

    This is a fundamental failure to understand the wording in the NZS noise guidelines that allowed for this corruption to occur. It appears to me that there are a great many people out there that do not realise to what extent developers will go to cheat. Unless every attempt to cheat is foiled, all else serves no useful purpose. A criminal lawyer must be used in support of any attempt in the court process because there has been at least 10 years of cheating to contend with involving a large number of people. In regards to what happened at Waubra, all the cheating flows through to other wind farms.

    Noel Dean.

  2. Good luck to DeFrock in their battle to achieve just outcomes for the increasing number of rural Australians suffering at the hands renewables obsessed governments and the wind rent seekers.
    Here in the Peoples Democratic Republic of Victoria, where Premier Andrews is more than happy to do secrete deals with the totalitarian government of the Peoples Republic of China, is it any wonder that Victorian Planning Panels are little more than show hearings. Our Planning Panels are much like the Chinese courts, with their 99.9% conviction rate, nothing but show courts used to enforce government control of the people.

  3. Bloody Brilliant work STT. I eagerly look forward to your future posts as mentioned. Keep up the have been my and many others inspiration for all these years. We have been fighting the proposed wind farm here in Keyneton SA since 2009 and continue to fight to stop it. We are on them like hungry dogs. The wind farm fraud must end

    1. Speaking as someone who fought a 10 year bruising battle and was successful in getting a proposal stopped in South West Victoria [ the proponents citing ‘technical ‘ reasons for dropping the proposal ] In my opinion the technical reasons were simple, it was made just too hard for them over many years to continue. The fight was taken right up to them and their cohorts at every opportunity.
      So, my message would be to circulate this STT posting far and wide, encourage more to become involved and never, never give up.

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