New Zealand Wind Farms Get Court Go-ahead

New Zealand’s Environment Court released its judgment on appeals made against the Hastings District Council’s decision to approve two wind farms in the district.

In making its decision, Judge Craig Thompson agreed the wind farms could compromise the visual and landscape amenity of the area, but said this was out-weighed by the capacity of the proposal to produce a reliable and affordable supply of electricity, enabling the community to provide for its future well-being. Applications made to the Council by Unison Networks Ltd and Hawke’s Bay Wind Farm Ltd. propose establishing wind farms totaling 90 turbines in the vicinity of the Titiokura Saddle and Maungaharuru Range. The combined wind farms will contribute 11.6% of the renewable energy target set by the Government and avoid 571,000 tons of CO2 being released into the atmosphere if that same energy was produced using fossil fuels. “The Environment Court’s decision was the right decision for the wider community,” said Chair of the Council’s Hearings Committee Cr Dinah Williams, was pleased the Court had upheld the Council’s approach.

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