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Planned Wind Farm Has Nine Less Turbines

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Jan 16 NZPA - The wind farm planned near Palmerston North will have nine fewer turbines following public consultation.

The Turitea wind farm, a Mighty River Power project, will now have 122 turbines.

The proposed development was to have 131 turbines but five were removed after neighbours felt they were too close to their properties and four were canned for "mainly ecological reasons".

"The decision to remove the nine proposed turbine sites comes after engagement with stakeholders, including the general public," the company said.

The engagement showed the community was "generally supportive of wind generation".

Project manager Mark Henry said the company was committed to ensuring the project was well understood by the community.

Staff were available for further public engagement and discussion, he said.

"We have listened to neighbours in and around the project site, and particularly those living next to the proposed turbine sites."

The four turbines removed for environmental reasons were done after feedback from environmental specialists said they were on ecologically important sites.

"They are in a sensitive area to the water reservoir and, having listened to the ecology experts and their explanation of the importance of this area, we decided to remove these turbine sites."

A modified layout will be submitted to the Board of Inquiry prior to notification of the resource consent applications on January 24.

"The proposed change is not expected to impact on the consent process, Mr Henry said.

In December Environment Minister Nick Smith referred Mighty River Power's proposal for the wind farm to an independent board of inquiry saying it was the most transparent and fair way to decide the outcome.

NZPA WGT kc rq

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