The final route of a massive electricity network upgrade that promises to unlock huge amounts of new large-scale wind and solar in western Victoria has been narrowed down to just a few alternative corridors, ahead of an updated proposal expected to be made mid-year.
ASX-listed AusNet Services this week unveiled the latest design for the Western Victoria Transmission Network Project, which proposes a new transmission line stretching nearly 200km from Bulgana, in Victoria’s west, to the north-western Melbourne suburb of Sydenham.
AusNet said the changes to the Western Victorian Transmission Network Project – pictured in the map below – brought it a step closer to being realised, as the first major grid upgrade for the state in 30 years and a “critical” piece of its renewable energy puzzle.
At least one community group has come out firing already, claiming that the WVTNP will “cause immeasurable economic damage to local farmers and irreparable harm to the environment and landscape – to say nothing of the amenity and liveability of our region and the wellbeing of residents.”
The group, a coalition of local landowners, residents and businesses that calls itself Stop AusNet’s Towers, is calling on governments to guarantee “full, genuine consultation, conduct and independent analysis” of alternatives to overhead lines, including underground options.
Image: AusNet Services