Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Prime agricultural land loss or booming future energy? That's the solar planning conundrum for Victoria

Residents near Shepparton are concerned that farmland the Victorian Government has invested in under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan will be lost to agriculture as the state undergoes a solar farm boom.
Victorian farmers are concerned about the lack of
 solar planning laws on prime agricultural land.
Four applications for solar farms in the Greater Shepparton region that could produce up to 243 megawatts of electricity have been proposed for Tatura, Tallygaroopna, Lemnos and Congupna, and have been 'called in' by the Victorian planning minister.

The projects, worth a total of nearly $300 million, are now being investigated by a planning panel with a view that their decision will form the basis for new planning policy in the state.

Critics say there has been no thought put to where the solar farms are being placed and how much prime agricultural land is being lost, and while there is suitable, more arid land available close by.


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