The EPA Board has concluded its assessment of the proposed construction and operation of a wind farm near Granville Harbour on the state’s west coast.
Under the proposal, the Westcoast Wind Pty Ltd facility would generate up to 99 megawatts of renewable energy, connected to the state’s electricity grid at the Reece Dam via an 11 kilometre long transmission line.
The Chair of the EPA Board John Ramsay says the Board has decided the proposed facility could be developed and managed in an environmentally sustainable and acceptable manner, with certain conditions.
"Westcoast Wind Pty Ltd submitted a proposal to build and operate the wind farm to be located on the Granville Farm, 1.5 kilometres north of Granville Harbour and 25 kilometres north-west of Zeehan," Mr. Ramsay said.
Mr. Ramsay said one representation was received in relation to the permit application, which was submitted in December 2013. The representation was supportive of the proposal.
He said the EPA Board gave consideration to various environmental issues, particularly the potential for impacts on threatened bird and mammal species, and potential for noise impacts on nearby residents.
"The Board has recommended site-specific conditions relating to submission of final wind farm and transmission line design, monitoring of birds and mammals on site during the construction and operational phases, and monitoring of noise impacts, so that any adjustments required during the 25 year operation of the wind farm, can be adequately addressed," Mr. Ramsay said.
The proposal was considered by the Board in the context of the sustainable development objectives of the Resource Management and Planning System of Tasmania (RMPS), and in the context of the objectives of the Environmental Management and Pollution Control System (EMPCS) established by the EMPC Act.
The functions of the Board are to administer and enforce the provisions of the Act, and in particular to use its best endeavours to protect the environment of Tasmania, and to further the RMPS and EMPCS objectives.
The Board undertook the assessment of the proposal in accordance with the Environmental Impact Assessment Principles defined in Section 74 of the EMPC Act.
The EPA Board’s environmental assessment, including the environmental conditions that must be included in any permit, have been forwarded to West Coast Council, for review of planning issues prior to making a decision as to whether a permit is to be granted.
The decision by the EPA Board can be viewed on the EPA website