Comment by Michael Giles

IT’S not a question of whether or not you support exploring efficient sources of renewable energy.
It never was.
And the comments by Greens’ leader, Dr Richard Di Natale, that Environment Minister Greg Hunt was just kowtowing to the ‘Tin Foil Hat Brigade’, by offering to appoint a national wind farm commissioner, is further evidence that he completely misses the point.
Frankly you’d expect a bit more from a medical doctor, who has worked in a country practice in rural Victoria.
What it is about, what it has always been about is getting the planning rules right and forcing the developers to play by the rules.
In the case of Bald Hills, they’ve failed to do so from day one and with no one in charge of compliance, it’s little wonder that serious problems are now emerging.
The other absolute load of codswallop, that we are sick of hearing about, is the claims by those in Canberra and Spring Street, that the wind energy industry will result in significant job opportunities for country people. No it won’t!
The primary concern about the Bald Hills Wind Farm at the moment is the claim that several of the turbines have been located too close to non-host houses and, under certain conditions, are creating an unacceptably loud noise.
The fact that well-known, decent people are making these claims and not nutters, is significant.
They have hoped all along that there wouldn’t be any nuisance noise and are devastated that their worst fears have been realised.
At the very least their claims deserve to be tested without a barrage of abuse from people who don’t know what they are talking about.
And if the turbines are given the all clear as far as health risks are concerned, they can start erecting them along the beach at Brighton and down the Great Ocean Road as well.
The truth of it is though, that we don’t want wind turbines to be erected everywhere, that there must be strict guidelines about where they can be located and once established, those planning and operational rules should be enforced.
That’s all they are asking, but above the clamour from those with a vested interest and the turbines themselves, it’s no wonder the affected residents can’t be heard.