Senator Matt Canavan has requested the Queensland Government to delay making a final decision on the Mt Emerald wind farm proposal west of Cairns.
This follows a decision by a Senate committee inquiring into wind turbines to hold a public hearing in Cairns on May 18.
Senator Canavan is a member of the Committee and has written to Deputy Premier Jackie Trad requesting a decision on the Mt Emerald proposal be deferred until after the Cairns hearing.
“One of the purposes of the Committee’s hearing in Cairns will be to hear from the local community, and the proponent, about the proposed wind farm at Mt Emerald,” Senator Canavan said. “My understanding is that the Queensland Government is currently considering whether to approve this project.
“In the interests of wide stakeholder consultation and best-practice policy-making principles, I have requested that the Queensland Government delay making a final decision on the Mt Emerald proposal until it has the opportunity to hear the evidence presented to the Senate Committee.
“Previous hearings have heard compelling evidence from residents living close to wind turbines about their impact on residents’ health and wellbeing. Unlike other States, Queensland has no specific regulatory guidelines on the minimum distance turbines can be from a place of residence.
“Parliamentary committees provide witnesses with a range of protections. As a result, the evidence provided at this public hearing may add to the statements made at other public consultations that the Queensland Government has already conducted in regards to the Mt Emerald wind turbines proposal.”
Senator Canavan said the Senate Select Committee on Wind Turbines confirmed on Wednesday that it will conduct a public hearing in Cairns on May 18. The Committee is tasked with inquiring into and reporting on the application of regulatory governance and economic impact of wind turbines.