Call for ac­tion

Shepparton News - Country News - - NEWS -

State Mem­ber for Shep­par­ton Suzanna Sheed has again called on the Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment to share a time­line for de­ci­sions on four lo­cal plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tions and the re­lease of draft guide­lines for fu­ture so­lar de­vel­op­ment.

After urg­ing Plan­ning Min­is­ter Richard Wynne to ad­dress the lack of guide­lines for so­lar farms across the state and to sup­port Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil by call­ing in the projects, Ms Sheed said she would con­tinue to put pres­sure on the gov­ern­ment to fol­low through.

‘‘It has been nearly seven months since you called in these projects and more than three months since the end of the Pan­els Vic­to­ria hear­ings that took place in Shep­par­ton,’’ Ms Sheed said dur­ing ques­tion time in Vic­to­rian Par­lia­ment on Septem­ber 5.

‘‘While there is wide sup­port for re­new­able en­ergy projects in the Shep­par­ton dis­trict, there can be no doubt that this re­gion com­prises high-value agri­cul­tural land that has had sub­stan­tial re­cent in­vest­ment in ir­ri­ga­tion mod­erni­sa­tion.

‘‘There are com­pet­ing in­ter­ests at play here and my com­mu­nity is look­ing for cer­tainty go­ing for­ward.’’

The four ap­pli­ca­tions in ques­tion are in Lem­nos, Tatura East, Congupna and Tal­ly­ga­roopna, with the main crit­i­cism be­ing that so­lar farms should not be lo­cated on ir­ri­gated land after ma­jor up­grades have been made to the re­gion’s ir­ri­ga­tion sys­tem.

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