Learn more about the Visual Impact Assessment.
The following information provides a summary of why we have applied for a modification to the approved Rye Park Wind Farm project.
The approved Rye Park Wind Farm (the Project) constitutes an approximate $700 million investment and is located to the west of Rye Park, to the north-west of Yass and south-east of Boorowa, in New South Wales. The Modification Application has been prepared to request the modification to the Project Development Consent State Significant Development (SSD) 6693 (Development Consent) under section 4.55(2) of the Environment Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act).
Development Consent was granted, by the NSW Planning Assessment Commission (PAC, now known as the Independent Planning Commission), on 22 May 2017, for the construction, operation and decommissioning of up to 92 wind turbines with a maximum tip height of 157 metres and associated infrastructure. In the years since the original Development Consent were determined, there have been significant advances in wind turbine technology. The application to modify the Development Consent (Modification Application) has been pursued in order to take advantage of these technology changes and to provide greater certainty with regards to the constructability of the Project.
What modifications are being proposed?
In response to submissions made during the public exhibition period, ongoing consultation with landholders and government agencies, and progression of the Project’s detailed design, further revisions have been made to the Modified Project.
These include refinement to the Project infrastructure including:
It also includes further Modifications to the Development Consent including:
|Project component||Approved Project||Modified Project||Final Modified Project||Change from the Modified Project to the Final Modified Project||Change from the Approved Project to the Final Modified Project|
|Number of wind turbines||92||80||77||Decrease by 3||Decrease by 15|
|Height of turbines (max tip height)||157m||200m||200m||No change||Increase by 43m|
|Operations and maintenance buildings||2||1||1||No change||Decrease by 1|
|Collection substations||3||1||1||No change||Decrease by 2|
|Connection substations||1||1||1||No change||No change|
|Preferred Transport Route (Local)||Multiple Options||A Preferred Option||A Preferred Option||No change||Selection of A Preferred Option|
|Concrete Batch Plants||2||3||3||No change||Increase by 1|
|Construction Compounds||3||2||3||Increase by 1||No change|
|Development Corridor (Wind Farm & Permanent Met Masts)||1,646 ha||1,272 ha||1,327.57 ha||Increase by 55.57 ha||Decrease by 318.43 ha|
Why have we prepared the Modification Application?
The Proposed Modifications are required to enable the Project to utilise improvements in wind energy technology to enable significantly more renewable energy production to be achieved with fewer, larger wind turbines and to reflect the outcomes of the ongoing design optimisation and assessment carried out as the Project progresses towards construction.
The justification for the Proposed Modifications and the associated benefits can be summarized as follows:
What assessments does the Modification Application consider, and what did they find?
A detailed assessment of the key impacts of the Proposed Modifications has been undertaken by technical specialists and included as part of the Modification Application.
The assessments focused on the potential change in impacts compared with the Approved Project. The assessments have also taken into consideration the relevant environmental issues identified in the Original Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Response to Submissions (RTS). The following table summarises changes to impacts, mitigation strategies and Development Consent conditions:
|Specialist Assessment type||Change in impact||Changes to mitigation strategies||Changes to Development Consent|
|Visual||Not considered to result in a magnitude of visual change that would significantly increase visual effects (and former visual impact ratings) associated with the Approved Project.||No||No|
|Shadow Flicker and Blade Glint||No increased shadow flicker impacts on non-associated residences and no impact of blade glint.||No||No|
|Noise||With the implementation of the curtailment strategy, noise level from the Modified Project is predicted to achieve the noise criteria at all nearby residences, consistent with the Approved Project.||Yes|
Implementation of a curtailment strategy
See Section 2.2.1 of the Amendment Report
|Biodiversity||No increased impact on White Box Yellow Box Blakely’s Red Gum Woodland EEC under the BC Act. Impacts on Box Gum Woodland reduced by 12.7 ha.||No||Yes|
See Section 2.2.2 of the Amendment Report
|Bird and Bat||Increased risk to blade strike to species that regularly occur above 30m AGL. No increased impact or adverse impacts to species listed under the BC Act.||No||No|
|Aboriginal Heritage||Increased number of Aboriginal Heritage Items identified, however with the implementation of mitigation measures, the Modified Project would result in a similar to moderately increased level of harm in comparison to the Approved Project.||No||Yes|
See Section 4.0 for the description of the Proposed Modifications and impact assessment in Section 7.7
|Historic (European) Heritage||No impact on historic heritage listings of Commonwealth, National, or NSW State Significance however additional areas of archaeological potential identified. Overall, impact on Historic Heritage is slightly higher compared to the Approved Project.||Yes|
A 20m buffer to be applied to areas of archaeological potential. Further mitigation to be outlined in a Heritage Management Plan.
|Traffic and Transport||A 0.1% reduction in heavy vehicle construction traffic, however impacts would not be significant if appropriate mitigation is applied. Two additional over-dimensional routes from the Port of Newcastle identified.||No||Yes|
See Section 4.0 for the description of the Proposed Modifications and impact assessment in Section 7.9
|Electromagnetic Interference||otential for interference with point-to-area style communications such as mobile phone signals, radio broadcasting, and terrestrial television broadcasting. A range of options are available to rectify difficulties.|
Increased potential for cumulative impacts on mobile phone, radio, and television signals.
|Aviation||No infringement of any OLS, PANS OPS surfaces or the Grid LSALTS. Little to no impact upon local flying activities and unlikely to affect ATC surveillance systems.|
The modified project will infringe the LSALT protection surfaces for four air routes, however this is consistent with the Approved Project.
The assessments prepared confirm that the Proposed Modification will result in some increased impacts but that most of these impacts may continue to be appropriately managed by the existing mitigation measures under the Development Consent conditions and the statement of commitments.
Learn more about the Visual Impact Assessment.
Learn more about the Shadow Flicker and Blade Glint Assessment.
Learn more about the Noise Assessment.
Learn more about the Biodiversity Assessment Report (BDAR).
Learn more about the Biodivesity ASsessment for birds and bats.
Learn more about the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Assessment.
Learn more about the Historic (European) Assessment.
Learn more about the Traffic Impact Assessment.
Learn more about the Electromagnetic Interference Assessment.
Learn more about the Aviation Assessment.
We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.
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