South Gippsland Offshore Wind Turbines

South Gippsland residents fear offshore wind turbines will ruin coastline’s beauty

24th September, 2022

By Journal Break

Gippslanders are concerned that the wind turbines will become a “parody” of the Bass Coast landscape.

Key points:

  • Locals are concerned that wind turbines are ruining the beauty of the coast.
  • The South Gippsland County Council has requested changes to the proposed offshore wind zones.
  • A resident of Warata Bay petitions for the turbines to be further from the shore.

The Australian Government has proposed six Gippsland offshore wind sites, two of which are in close proximity to the coast.

The zone extends from Phillip Island to the northeast of Seaspray.

Four companies have proposed wind farms between Wilson’s Point and Sale – Star of the South, Great Eastern, Greater Gippsland and Sea Dragon.

South Gippsland County Council said in a report that several offshore wind projects are also being considered in South Gippsland.

Pressure on advice

Council Mayor Mohya Davis says renewables are the future and she understands the benefits to society, but there is a lot of pressure on the council to support the projects.

“We are also in conflict because our pristine coastline and coastal villages and our natural environment are highly valued by our community,” Ms Davis said.

An aerial photograph showing the coastline with green areas painted on it off the coast to show offshore wind zones.
Applications for the federal government’s proposal for an offshore wind zone close on October 7th.(Supplied by: Department of Energy, Climate Change, Environment and Water Resources.)

The council is asking the federal government not to include coastal areas for offshore wind power development.

Currently, the proposed minimum distance from the shore for wind turbines is 6 kilometers.

During Wednesday’s council meeting, council member Scott Ray said the offshore wind proposals were forced on the South Gippsland community.

“I cannot support anything that destroys the coastline or the environment for an experimental energy product that may or may not save us,” he said.

industrial invasion

Waratah Bay resident and engineer Robert Boelen said areas close to the coast should not be included in the proposal to protect the bay from industrial encroachment.

“The areas closest to the coast are intrusive, and they are also smaller areas, quite small, so you don’t get a huge energy return by putting these things on people’s faces,” he said.

Ocean and beach in the distance, trees and park in the foreground.
View of the coast of Bass from Waratah Bay, with Cape Wilson visible in the background.(Supplied by: Robert Boelen)

“They are known to have a dominant influence at such a distance. In other words, you won’t see anything else with these things there.”

Mr Boelen is petitioning for offshore wind zones to be limited to the southernmost areas to minimize visual impact and has received over 100 signatures so far.

He said that if the wind turbines were placed close to the shore, he would sell his house and move out.

“We won’t be able to put up with it because it’s such a parody of a beautiful neighborhood,” he said.

solar energy

Mr Bohlen suggested using more solar energy to prevent a decline in the number of tourists visiting the area.

“We have vast deserts everywhere, even in the state and across the country,” he said.

Mr Boelen said the rapid transition to offshore wind was driven by Australia’s climate inaction over the past decade.

“I think it’s an exercise in salesmanship that’s pretty cynical about the situation we’re in, which is basically because of 10 years of inactivity in the area,” he said.

“The corporations that sell them make huge profits. In fact, offshore costs them about 15% less because they don’t pay rent to the landowners.”


The Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water is taking feedback on the suitability of offshore renewable energy infrastructure in Commonwealth waters off Gippsland, Victoria.

Have your say by 7 October 2022, at

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