Deputy PM supports wind energy

Reliance on wind could create emergency shortfalls: AEMO

Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce’s support for the White Rock Wind Farm illustrates how vital wind energy is to rural communities, according to the Australian Wind Alliance.

Mr Joyce joined wind company Goldwind in Tamworth today to announce the start of construction of the first stage of the White Rock Wind Farm in northern New South Wales.

Australian Wind Alliance national co-ordinator Andrew Bray says Mr Joyce’s championing of clean energy projects is a welcome message from the Nationals Leader.

“We’re delighted to see Barnaby Joyce recognise the economic benefits that wind farms create for farmers and regional economies,” Mr Bray said.

“For many years wind farms have been delivering jobs and investment to rural Australia while cleaning up Australia’s coal-burning power system.”

New research from Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows clean energy investment is “crushing fossil fuels” with wind and solar now attracting twice the amount of global funding as fossil fuels.

“We will see more jobs created in regional Australia if state and federal governments articulate clear renewable energy policies that allow Australia to take advantage of the global clean energy boom.”

Seventy turbines will be erected in the first construction stage of the White Rock Wind Farm, which is expected to inject up to $35 million into the New England economy and produce enough energy to power 75,000 homes every year.

“This project is a fillip for New England’s farmers, businesses and community groups,” Mr Bray said.

The White Rock project is the first wind farm to be built without support from the ACT-government since the Abbott Government shook industry confidence and slashed the renewable energy target (RET).

“The fact that a wind farm project is proceeding to construction under the RET is a positive sign that the market conditions may be recovering,” Mr Bray said.