5th August, 2021
By Alysia Thomas-Sam
In Tasmania’s north-west, Stanley was crowned the state’s top tourist town for 2021, known as the jewel of the region.
Famous for an inactive volcano that resembles the shape of a nut and for some of the cleanest air in the world, Stanley is loved by locals.
Sydney-based company Epuron also loves the idea of Stanley and has proposed to build 12 wind turbines on the north-western peninsula of the town.
“They wouldn’t put a wind farm near Uluru, or they wouldn’t put a wind farm at the (Great) Barrier Reef, so why here?” Stanley farmer Robert Smith told A Current Affair.
Mr Smith said his farm will be the closest property to the wind farm and believes it will provide no benefit to him.
“They’re talking about sending the power to Melbourne and our power’s not going to be any cheaper, all we’re going to be left with is an ugly sight,” he said.
Kerry Houston runs the Ship Inn, historic suites and apartment accommodation that sits at the base of the Stanley nut.
She believes the wind farm will ruin the appeal of visiting the iconic nut for tourists.
“Nothing’s going to compete with the nut. It is a standalone champion at the end of this peninsula, and it shouldn’t be industrialised. It should be protected,” she said.
Epuron’s Donna Bolton said the company is not going away and wants to win over locals like Ms Houston and Mr Smith.
“I haven’t heard of anywhere that a wind farm has had an impact on tourism and I don’t believe there are any studies to show that,” she said.
Local shop owner Louise Payne said she doesn’t want to risk it.
“My business will be dead. People don’t want to come and stay where there are wind farms because they can’t sleep, I won’t be able to sleep and that’s a big concern for me,” she said.