Hawke’s Bay wind farm rejected

A wind farm project, selected by the Labour Government to be fast-tracked through the resource consent process, has been turned down by the Environment Court.

The proposed 34-turbine wind farm near the Te Waka Range in Hawke’s Bay was rejected in a court decision yesterday, lines company Unison company said.

The company refused to say why the court had turned down its proposal, but chief executive Ken Sutherland said on the basis of this decision a legislative change would be needed for such schemes to succeed in the future.

“The decision sends some seriously disconcerting signals to companies trying to undertake environmentally friendly energy production,” he said.

“Unison and its business partner in this proposed venture have spent more than five years going through legal processes to go this far, and have spent significant sums pursuing consent for this excellent energy source.”

Mr Sutherland said three turbines had been removed from the original design at a loss of renewable electricity for 3000 homes per year in order to cater for Maori concerns.

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