New South Wales
Opposition to the creation of the Bonshaw Solar Farm – Neville and Lyn Heywood, 940 Camp Creek Road, Atholwood 2361.
The application number we are concerned about is SSD-9438 Bonshaw Solar Farm
My wife Lyn and I, (Neville Heywood) are strongly opposed to the establishment of a solar farm on the Bruxner Highway Bonshaw. We see it as a despoiling of the beautiful landscape around Bonshaw between Tenterfield and Goondiwindi and Bonshaw and Inverell. This is a particularly scenic area and a solar farm completely incongruous in the environment. I am presently preparing a submission for a doctorate and Bonshaw is a central area for my study of the bush there. A Solar farm does not fit the unity and harmony of the environment and will be a form of visual vandalism totally out of character with this area. While at this point it appears to be solar alone and not wind turbine technology, a large capacity solar farm is completely out of character nevertheless. Such a project as the wind turbines totally destroy the visual beauty of the landscape between Inverell and Glen Innes and such a solar farm introduction will do the same out here – mega acres of unnatural black shiny panels.
We consider these projects in large-scale solar farms a second rate method of generating electricity where the environment pays the price. This is not green technology – but black technology – and ugly and disregards the appearance of beautiful rural landscapes like that in the Bonshaw district. I firmly believe that the best form of solar energy is that located in urban areas, not as solar farms but on the roofs of dwellings, commercial buildings and factory buildings. In those contexts they are not incongruous or unattractive. It’s a visual win for all. Urban areas with buildings relate to the panels on their rooves – especially if they were placed on every user’s roof. Those areas then can use some of the electricity generated and feed it into the grid. For those connected to the grid at present as users of electricity they could pay a small levy in their bill that over time the electricity retailer could return the value of the subsidies these new industries receive back to the federal government. At the moment its taxpayer money gifted in subsidy with no pay back – just a lucrative money spin for those taking advantage of this windfall. Its not an unrealistic approach in the sense that poles and wires are passed onto consumers, so why not solar panels for users as well.
We urge that this project does not go ahead and that the Bonshaw landscape will keep its unified, natural aesthetic appeal for all who live there. My family ancestors have lived in the Bonshaw area since before the 1850’s. We therefore have great attachment to this area and extremely concerned that such an industry is intending to locate here.