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Hepburn Wind Farm: Construction Contract Signed

Posted in Movements by Kate Archdeacon on May 8th, 2010

Source: Greenleap

From Green Light for Hepburn Wind, 28 April

Australia’s first community-owned wind farm has moved from a dream to a certainty this week with the signing of the major contract for the construction of the wind farm and the release of the final share offer.  The announcements were enthusiastically received by the members of Hepburn Wind who packed into the Daylesford Town Hall for Hepburn Wind’s Annual General Meeting on Wednesday evening.  “Hepburn Wind today signed the final contracts with REpower Systems to build Australia’s first community owned wind farm at Leonards Hill”, said a delighted Simon Holmes a? Court. “Hundreds of volunteers, helped by the strong support of our members, have been working towards this milestone for the last five years.”

More than 1100 members of the co-operative have invested $7.5m so far. Community funds, coupled with finance from Bendigo Bank and a $975,000 grant from the State Government, have provided Hepburn Wind with the means to give REpower the ‘green light’ to the $12.9m project.  At the meeting, Holmes a? Court announced the release of a final offer of 1.8 million shares. Hepburn Wind’s offer is open to all Victorians. Application information is available on the Hepburn Wind website. Members will receive dividends from the sale of the clean electricity produced. In addition, the project aims to contribute more than $1,000,000 to community sustainability initiatives over the next 25 years.

“Most Australians want to see a meaningful response to the threat of climate change, but many aren’t sure what constructive role they can play.” said Mr Holmes a? Court. “By pooling resources, the community of Daylesford and Hepburn Springs has developed a model for the low carbon future that is both low cost — at least four times cheaper than rooftop solar PV — and brings a significant new business to town.” The two turbine wind farm is projected to generate 12,200 MWh annually, significantly more than the estimated  10,100 MWh used by the 1887 households of Daylesford.  Construction is scheduled to begin in October 2010. The wind farm is expected to start producing power in the second quarter of 2011. Mr Holmes a? Court confirmed that communities around the country have been in contact to enquire about applying the Hepburn Model elsewhere.

For more information regarding the project and the share offer, visit www.hepburnwind.com.au, email info@hepburnwind.com.au or call (03) 5348 6760.

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