EIS for AGL’s Coopers Gap Wind Farm approved

The Environmental Impact Statement has been approved for AGL Energy’s proposed Coopers Gap Wind Farm in southern Queensland.

The $500m wind farm, to be located between Kingaroy and Dalby, is expected to create 350 jobs during construction, and 20 permanent jobs when it is fully operational in 2020.

The project would be Queensland’s biggest wind farm, generating up to 460MW of electricity and potentially powering more than 240,000 households.

AGL managing director and CEO Andy Vesey said the approval was an important step in the progression of such a significant renewable energy project for Queensland.

“Coopers Gap Wind Farm will provide economic as well as environmental benefits for the local region and the state,” Mr Vesey said.

“We are looking forward to continuing the project’s development, and to working with the local community on fine-tuning the details.”

The Coordinator-General has placed conditions on his approval, including on noise compliance and testing, shadow flicker compliance and offsets for flora and fauna disturbance.

The OCG’s Report, which includes approval of the EIS, will now be used by the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning in its assessment of a Development Application for the project.

It is hoped the Coopers Gap Wind Farm will be the next greenfield renewable development offered to the Powering Australian Renewables Fund (PARF).

Minister for State Development Dr Anthony Lynham said approval by the state’s independent Coordinator-General was a win for jobs and businesses in the local area.

“AGL has advised it will employ local people and use local contractors from across the Wide Bay Burnett and Darling Downs wherever possible,” he said.

“This project will contribute up to $4 million each year to the local economy.”