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Submissions Closed: DWF Planning Permit Applications

Approvals Process

Planning Permit Application

In December 2020, OSMI submitted three planning applications for approval to build a wind energy facility (one for each local government area, being Latrobe City, South Gippsland Shire and Baw Baw Shire) and a planning application for a utility installation (terminal station and supporting infrastructure to connect to the grid) to the Minister for Planning. 

Given the complexity of an application across three local government areas and the need for a separate application relating to the utility installation, the Minister for Planning ‘called in’ all related applications to allow the project to be assessed under a single process. The Minister for Planning is responsible for making decisions on applications for renewable energy facilities.

Validation

The planning section of Department of Environment, Land, Water, and Planning (DELWP) has assessed the application to verify if it contains sufficient information for an assessment of the project to be made.

Stakeholder Referrals

DELWP is responsible for referring the application to relevant statutory authorities such as Regional Roads Victoria, CFA, EPA and the environment division of DELWP to allow each area to complete a technical assessment on their area of responsibility.

Public Consultation

Notices of application have been sent to all residents within 5 kms of the project boundary and published in a selection of local papers as directed by DELWP. All the documentation relating to the project is available by clicking here and the DELWP Planning website.

Submissions/Objection

The period for formal public comment closes on 18 August 2021. People who wish to make a submission on the proposal are encouraged to visit the DELWP Planning website where they will be able view project information and make a submission.

Alternatively, send your submission directly to DELWP via development.approvals@delwp.vic.gov.au.

Anyone who makes a submission on the proposal will also be asked if they wish to be heard at the public panel hearing that is scheduled for two weeks commencing on 18 October 2021. Further details in relation to this process will be published closer to the date.

The OSMI office will be open 9am – 7pm Monday, 9am – 5pm Tuesday to Friday and Saturday morning from 9am – 12noon, or by appointment, while the project is on exhibition when current restrictions ease.

For people who would like to understand how the wind farm would look in the landscape, OSMI will have Virtual Reality headsets in their Mirboo North Office at 52 Ridgway during this period.

If you wish to discuss any part of the application or make an appointment to review the documents outside published opening hours please contact us via contactus@osmi.com.au, call on 1800 OSMIAU, or drop in to see us at 52 Ridgway, Mirboo North VIC 3871.

Previous Referrals

Prior to lodging an application to build the wind farm, referrals were made to the Victorian Minister for Planning to determine if an Environmental Effects Statement (EES) was required for the project and to the Commonwealth Government to determine if approval were required under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act 1999.

Decisions were made by the Victorian Minister for Planning and the Federal Minister for Environment in July 2020 that the project is NOT a controlled action under the Commonwealth EBPC Act and the Delburn Wind Farm does not require an Environmental Effects Statement.

Technical Assessments

There is a significant amount of documentation that needs to be prepared for a wind farm application, including project description, project design and details about any potential impacts on the environment. Many supporting documents are required to accompany the application, including the technical assessments on subjects such as noise, visual and landscape impact, traffic, economics, biodiversity, and bush fire risk.

Information gathered for preliminary reports (required for the referral processes) then needs to be considered in more detail to finalise the assessments and to reflect changes made to the design to minimise the environmental impacts of the project.

The final technical assessments are available on the OSMI website and also form part of the planning permit application available on the DELWP website.