New Framework for Wind Farm Assessment in NSW

NSW Wind Energy FrameworkA new Wind Energy Framework was released by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment on 19 December 2016. According to the Department, this will provide greater clarity, consistency and transparency for industry and the community regarding both assessment and decision-making on wind energy projects.

The final Framework was approved after a series of informative community events, stakeholder engagement sessions and receipt of more than 1,900 submissions from interest groups.

New large-scale wind energy proposals that are State Significant Developments (SSD) are affected by the Framework. It does not apply to local or regional wind developments that are non-SSD.

Included in the new framework is the Standard Secretary’s Environmental Assessment Requirements (SEARs). Revisions to the assessments include the requirement for an Environmental Impact Statement for a wind farm and associated infrastructure to assess the impact of the development on:

  • Birds and bats
  • Aboriginal cultural heritage
  • Historic heritage
  • Biodiversity values.

It is unconfirmed whether a similar environmental assessment framework will be issued for major solar energy projects in NSW.


For further information or to discuss the implications of these new guidelines on your renewable energy project, please contact us on 1300 839 325.

Further information

Department of Planning and Environment - About the Wind Energy Framework
Wind Energy Guidelines
Environmental Assessment Requirements

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