Fury over wind farm plan for the Illawarra, NSW

“A complete failure waiting to happen!”

“This is the dumbest idea ever.”

“Absolute madness.”

When the MP took to social media to announce the creation of a $10 billion floating offshore wind farm in the Illawarra, located on the NSW south coast, she came under fire from the public.

Federal MP Fiona Phillips took to Facebook to inform locals from her seat of Gilmore about the change, detailing what she sees as the benefits of the move.

This included the creation of jobs and the ability of the wind farm to produce an impressive amount of energy.

But that wasn’t enough to get excited about the idea of ​​putting wind turbines in our ocean.

“An offshore wind zone was announced today along the Illawarra, delivering regional jobs and providing energy security for homes and businesses,” Ms Phillips said.

“The area has shrunk by a third and is 30km from the southern point at Kiama.

“It has the potential to generate approximately 2.9 GW of electricity, which is enough to power 1.8 million homes.

“It will bring new employment opportunities, creating approximately 1,740 new jobs during construction and 870 existing jobs. This includes engineers, technicians, operators, ropers, seamen, dock workers, project managers and administrators.

“In addition to providing reliable renewable energy for Australian industry, offshore wind projects will need to make the most of Australia’s supply chains and consult closely with local industry and workers in their project plans so that local workers and businesses benefit from the creation of this new industry. “

1,022km of NSW coastline will be the country’s fourth largest wind farm. The turbines are expected to be built 20km off the Illawarra coast.

Ms Phillip’s post was met with outrage when it was shared on the local Shoalhaven Incident Updates Facebook group.

“A classic example of destroying the environment to save the environment. Surely there are better options than this unaffordable madness,” wrote one commenter.

Another said: “What about migrating whales? The cost of fixing and repairing them after a large low pressure easterly system? The cost of the roads to get them to the coast? Why do most other overseas countries that have offshore wind farms stop? Are we so stupid just to look good to the world just to reduce our emissions?”

A third commented: “This is ridiculous, I will do anything to oppose it.”

And another wrote: “I heard last week that it costs 2.5 times more to build a wind turbine on water than on land! And we all pay for it!”

Others were unhappy that the Illawarra was chosen as the location over Sydney: “If it’s so … fantastic, put it away from Bondi Beach and see how green and eco-friendly it is then.”

“I’m so fed up with the Illawarra being used as crash test dummies for the rest of Sydney.”

Others said they would vote against the current government on this decision, writing; “goodbye Labour, you’ve just lost power”, “can’t wait for the next election” and “the collapse of the Labor party”.

However, there were some supporters of the wind farm.

“All the haters talking about ocean impacts have no idea…the same people on cruises must be screwing themselves!”

“Okay – so it seems that a significant number of people are completely opposed to the continued use of fossil fuels, but they don’t want wind farms built along the coast, nor large solar farms anywhere near them, and they certainly won’t even consider a nuclear plant! Can someone please explain to me how they plan to power our existing household electrical appliances/appliances and then charge the ever-increasing number of electric cars?”

The government’s revised plans for the area mean that important environmental areas will be excluded, including the key ecological feature of the Shelf Rocky Reef, a biologically important area for little penguins and a migration and breeding area for the southern right whale.

In a separate post, which included a video in which Ms Phillips insisted the wind farm would not kill the whales, Ms Phillips posted a commenter expressing concern about the birds being killed by the wind turbines instead.

Ms Phillips replied: “Any proposal for offshore wind farms must be signed off under the federal Environment, Biodiversity and Conservation Act. This is a strict approval process that can, if necessary, set conditions for offshore wind projects, taking into account migratory birds etc.

“For example, this could mean that the turbines are not operating at a certain time during a certain period of the year.”

Ms Phillips told news.com.au the wind zone was good news for the region.

“I welcome the declaration of the Illawarra Coastal Energy Zone,” Ms Phillips said.

“It’s about getting more renewable energy into the grid, which ensures energy security and puts pressure on electricity prices. This is good news for households, businesses and local jobs.”

For those who raised concerns, she said all offshore wind projects in Australia were subject to environmental approval requirements under environmental legislation, including the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

Ms Phillips also said projects must demonstrate how they will ensure impacts on protected species such as whales and migratory birds “will not be unacceptable and demonstrate how their projects will contribute to positive outcomes for nature”.

Offshore wind project developers will need to seek all required permits and licenses under Commonwealth and State legislation before any offshore infrastructure activities can take place.

“Let me be clear, anyone who opposes this is opposed to lower electricity prices and more local jobs,” Phillips said.

“What is Andrew Constance and Peter Dutton’s plan – nuclear? Nuclear energy is the most expensive form of energy, which means higher energy prices.

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