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Coalition vows to axe Illawarra wind farm

Coalition vows to axe Illawarra wind farm

Coalition Axe

The Coalition has vowed to axe plans for a wind farm off the coast of Illawarra, in New South Wales. Nationals leader David Littleproud made the announcement during a visit to Wollongong on Monday. “We want to send the investment signals that there is a cap on where [the Coalition] will go with renewables and where we will put them,” Littleproud stated.

“The Coalition isn’t against renewables, but renewables should be in an environment they can’t destroy.”

Littleproud suggested that priority should be given to rooftop solar panels to provide energy independence to businesses and households.

When questioned about the Nationals’ support for an offshore wind farm in Victoria’s Gippsland but not Illawarra, Littleproud explained, “They are fixed in Gippsland, this is floating.” He added that the Gippsland site has fewer nearby residents and fewer transmission line requirements.

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Coalition opposes Illawarra wind farm

Federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen defended the Illawarra wind farm, noting that three other areas around the country had also been marked as wind energy hubs. Bowen highlighted the consistent wind conditions offshore, which provide more reliable energy compared to onshore wind. Council’s chief executive, Kane Thornton, expressed disappointment at the Coalition’s stance.

He argued that Illawarra residents would prefer “wind turbines that are 20 kilometres offshore, as opposed to a nuclear reactor on their doorstep.” Thornton added that the Coalition’s opposition could undermine investor confidence in infrastructure projects across Australia. Opposition leader Peter Dutton indicated that the Coalition is considering six or seven nuclear power sites around the country, with locations to be revealed later. He warned that committing fully to the 2050 net zero agreement too quickly could harm Australian families and businesses in the short term.

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