Community Ecstatic as Planning Commission Slams Chinese Backed Wind Farm Project

The Gullen Range wind farm was a disaster from the get go (see our post here) – with hundreds of homes turned into sonic torture traps (see our post here). There are 32 non-involved residences within 1.5 km of turbines; about 60 within 2 km; and 118 within 3 km. Within 5 km there are about 240 non-involved residences.

The planning “process” was a complete farce, from go to whoa.

Its Chinese owner, Goldwind has been pushing to expand its operation near Crookwell in NSW for years. However, locals went on the offensive, early – the community was better organised and were prepared to fight to the finish.

In an uncharacteristically lucky break, the Department of Planning and Environment sided with the community, rather than swallow the developer’s standard line that rural folk just can’t wait to get dozens of 300 tonne monsters speared into their backyards, making a recommendation to the Planning Commission that the project be rejected.

Proving, yet again, that victory only visits the brave, diligent and tenacious, the good people of Crookwell can now celebrate the fact that the NSW Independent Planning Commission has finally scotched the project.

Crookwell III Wind Farm Refused Development Consent
New South Wales Independent Planning Commission
25 October 2019

The state’s Independent Planning Commission has refused development consent for a multi-million-dollar wind farm development in the NSW Southern Tablelands.

The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment referred the proposed 23-turbine Crookwell III Wind Farm to the Commission for determination in April this year amid community opposition. Commissioners Peter Duncan (Panel chair), Professor Zada Lipman and Adrian Pilton were appointed to consider the $120-million project, earmarked for a 1500-hectare site at Crookwell, 25km northwest of

The Commissioners met with Crookwell Development Pty Ltd (the Applicant), Department and Upper Lachlan Shire Council. They also held a public meeting in Crookwell to listen to the community’s concerns which centred around visual and landscape impacts, potential human health impacts and remediation and rehabilitation.

After carefully considering all the evidence and weighing the community’s views, the Commission has today (Friday 25 October 2019) determined to refuse this state significant development application.

In its Statement of Reasons for Decision, the Commission concluded that while the wind farm “would result in the public benefits of delivering renewable energy and reduce the reliance on fossil fuel consumption, there are significant residual issues”, including:

  • the visual impacts of the Project are unacceptable given the significant visual impacts on multiple residences and the proximity of turbines to non-associated residences
  • the site is not suitable for the Project, because of its proximity to and the nature and scale of visual impacts on residences and the community
  • the Project is inconsistent with objects (a), (b), (e) and (g) of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and is therefore not in the public interest; and
  • the Project does not satisfactorily address the objectives of the E3 – Environmental Management Zone of the Upper Lachlan LEP 2010 that require the protection of aesthetic values

The Commission also cited the Project’s potential adverse cumulative impacts in an area where there are other wind farms already operating.

“The community raised a number of significant concerns about the visual impacts of the project on surrounding residences and the cumulative effect of wind farm projects with residences potentially able to view wind turbines in multiple viewing sectors,” the Commission noted. “The community expressed concern that wind farm projects will transform the landscape from an attractive rural landscape towards an industrial landscape dominated by wind turbines.”

The Department originally referred the SSD application to the former Planning Assessment Commission (PAC) in 2015 with a recommendation that the proposed wind farm be approved; however, after a holding a public meeting the PAC sent it back to the Department for further assessment.

The Department completed its final assessment report in April this year, which concluded the wind farm should be refused.

The Commission’s Statement of Reasons for Decision is available here:
New South Wales Independent Planning Commission

Not this time: Chinese developer’s plans slammed.

About stopthesethings

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


  1. Allan Railery Jones says:

    Atmospheric pollution derived from blade erosion, which has become an issue for wind turbines, this eroded particulate is obviously blowing in the wind. A calculation of how much particle of fibre glass and exotic plastic could be made, if one could get measurement of the average amount of wear for each turbine and multiply that by number of turbines.

  2. Uncle Fester says:

    The legacy of Jupiter and EPYC continues. Once having demonstrated the testicular fortitude to knock back Jupiter on similar grounds, the DPE now finds it easier to do the right thing by non associated victims with two precedents set.

  3. Reblogged this on Climate-

  4. Well done when affected neighbors stick together. We at macarthur know how noisy these things are the developers dont give a rats they get approval. The amount of money they are throwing round at neighbors to get approval for proposed wind factorys means the macarthur wind farm owes the immediate neighbors one to two hundred thousand per year been going for seven years now we will never get a brass razoo out of them. But we still get the sleep deprivation.

  5. Reblogged this on ajmarciniak.

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