In The Press

Echo (21/2/09) After it all they get a gantry

I wouldn't want Echo readers to miss out on Western Power's latest blunder in the Eastern Terminal Substation debacle. In the Echo January 3, Western Power published an advert on page 14 advising their final decision on the Hackett's Gully bodge.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (14/2/09) Power gantry poses fire risk

We are all angered by arsonists in the east, and with good reason. We should also be angry with Western Power's decision to locate its gantry in the extreme bush fire risk area of Hacketts Gully. Should a fire occur in that area, either through its construction or its operation, then the densely populated area of Kalamunda Hills will no doubt face the same fate.

Read more...


Echo (10/1/09) No other option for terminal

Western Power has met with a community focus group to discuss phase one of the Powering Perth"s communities project.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (6/12/08) Power consult plan sparks protests

Action groups have described Western Power's latest attempt at community consultation over the Powering Perth's Communities project as a sham and a farce. Gary Warden, spokesman for the Hills Climate Action Group, and Alan Lonsdale, spokesperson for the SETS group, have come out in protest over the focus group meeting held last Saturday in Kalamunda.

Read more...


Echo (Nov 08) - Focus Group discusses Terminal Project

Western Power has met with a community focus group to discuss phase one of the Powering Perth"s communities project.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (25/10/08) - Project unplugs Shire Ire

Kalamunda Shire Council moved an urgent motion at its meeting on Monday over the latest development in Western Power's controversial Powering Perth's Communities project.

Read more...


Echo (25/10/08) - Eastern Terminal Project renamed

Western Power have announced a new name for the former Eastern Terminal project, saying the change was needed to reflect a new approach.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (06/09/08) - Mixed Views on Terminal

Candidates contesting Hills seats have outlined a range of views on Western Power's proposed Eastern Terminal.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (16/08/08) Win for Power Protest

A group fighting the construction of an electrical switchyard in the Hills is celebrating after Western Power announced it would take the project back to the drawing board....

Read more...


Echo (16/08/08) Terminal discussed at meeting

Western Power's General Manager in Customer Services Mark de Laeter addressed the Shire of Kalamunda's Planning and Services Committee regarding the proposed Eastern Terminal switchyard. Over 80 people filled the chamber to demonstrate their disapproval of Western Power's lack of community consultation...

Read more...


Hills Gazette (July 2008) Walk Trail damaged

Western Power has admitted two of its contractors damaged areas of a walking trail in Kalamunda during recent maintenance.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (28/06/08) Substation in activists firing line

A newly formed group of Hills climate activists will fight the proposed construction of the eastern terminal electricity substation.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (28/06/08) Tsunami of salt is a real killer

...Lo and behold on the same page is a big advertisement - an invitation from Western Power. The subject is basically land clearing for its new power line.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (24/05/08) - Sparks fly over switch

Western Power have conceded they should have provided Hills residents with clearer information about the development of an Eastern Terminal Substation.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (19/04/08) - Fears over power plan

A group opposing Western Power's plans to build an eastern terminal substation in the Hills fear the community will not receive a fair hearing during the next round of consultation.

Read more...


Hills Gazette Letter to the Editor (19/04/08) - Why the change?

"I note with interest that Ian Buchanan from Western Power (Geologist's ideas rejected, Gazette, April 5) confirmed the southeastern terminal and the recommissioning of the transmission line are required in addition to the eastern terminal..."

Read more...


The West Australian (17/04/08) - Plan to build more coal power stations

Coal magnate Rick Stowe is planning to capitalise on the high price of domestic gas by spending up to $1.2 billion building 3 new power stations in a move that will put further pressure on the WA Government's greenhouse targets.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (05/04/08) - Geologist's idea rejected

Western Power has rejected a suggestion from a Hills Geologist that its planned eastern terminal substation is unnecessary.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (29/03/08) - Hacketts Gully plea

Kalamunda Shire Council wants the State Government to extend Kalamunda National Park to incorporate an area of the state forest at Hacketts Gully.

Read more...


Hills Gazette Letter to the Editor (29/03/08) - Residents must be consulted

"I am very concerned at Western Power's announcement of the building of a gantry on Mundaring Weir Road and upgrade of the existing 132,0000 volt line between Boddington and this new gantry."

Read more...


Hills Gazette (22/03/08) - Council speaks out on station

Kalamunda Shire Council has expressed its intense opposition to the area Western Power is studying as a site for a planned eastern terminal substation.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (15/03/08) - Calls to Delay Plan

A group opposed to Western Power's proposed eastern terminal substation in the Hills has urged energy minister Francis Logan to halt construction of a temporary gantry structure planned for Hacketts Gully.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (01/03/08) - Group to fight for land

Tourism operators in the Hills have joined forces to fight Western Power's plans to build an eastern terminal substation in the Hills.

Read more...


Hills Gazette Letter to the Editor (01/03/08) - Western Power plot thickens - Mr John Davenport, Bickley

"I note that Mr de Laeter claims the main reason for a "hills connection" to the metropolitan grid is because of new power stations being built at Collie".

Read more...


Hills Gazette Letter to the Editor (23/02/08) - Home not yet chosen for ET - Mr Mark de Laete, General Manager, Customer Services, Western Power

"In response to the letter from John Davenport from Bickley, published in the February 16 issue, I assure residents that Western Power has not chosen a location for the proposed Eastern Terminal (ET) substation."

Read more...


Hills Gazette Letter to the Editor (16/02/08) - Stealth at work over project - Mr John Davenport, Bickley

"Western Power's announcement of the reconstruction of the Collie to Hacketts Gully transmission line strongly suggests that it has chosen a site for the eastern terminal in the Hacketts Gully area."

Read more...


# Hills Gazette (09/02/08) - People power ignored

An action group fighting the construction of an electricity substation in the Hills believes Western Power has no interest in consulting the community over a site.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (15/12/07) - Substation put on backburner

Opponents to a proposed electrical terminal substation in the Hills have won a 12 month reprieve, with Western Power this week announcing it needs more time to consult the community.

Read more...


Echo Newspaper (14/11/07) - Shire seeks consultation

Kalamunda Shire Council will request a consultation with Western Power on the proposal for the new Eastern Sub Terminal.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (10/11/07) - Substation fight on

Opposition is mounting against Western Power's proposed Eastern Terminal Substation in the Hills.

Read more...


Echo Newspaper (10/11/07) - Terminal Call

Darling Range MLA John Day has called for the State Government to listen to concerns of local residents about a new terminal substation to be constructed in the Kalamunda District.

Read more...


Kalgoorlie Miner (Oct 07) - Threat to goldfields water

Goldfields drinking water could be at risk of contamination if a proposed Western Power substation is established in Kalamunda, according to Kalamunda Shire Councillor Frank Lindsay.

Read more...


Echo Newspaper (Oct 07) - Substation site up for discussion

Residents will take an active role in the selection of a site for a new $180 million terminal substation in the Kalamunda-Mundaring area, according to Western Power.

Read more...


Hills Gazette (29/05/99) - Substation opposed

Kalamunda Shire Council will "vehemently" oppose a bid by Western Power to build a substation near Mundaring Weir Road in Hacketts Gully.

Read more...


Thankyou for your support this year.

by Claire 12/21/2008 9:05:00 PM

To All Our Members and Supporters

Thank you for a wonderful year of support and action.

Our achievements this year have been spectacular. Western Power have been forced to rebadge their Eastern Terminal project several times. It has received 668 submissions thanks to your efforts. 598 of you were concerned about clearing of State Forest, 592 about the impact on the Water Catchment, and 539 on the impacts on the economics of the area (ie tourism.) Unfortunately Western Power has labelled this July consultation a "failure" as it did not give them the answers they wanted and have embarked on another costly round of consultation which ended in a workshop on 29th November. Thanks to your boycott only 11 community members participated and all roundly condemned Western Power"s proposal! This now equates to a 2 year delay to their project.

We still have to be vigilant in our opposition if we are to protect this critically endangered part of the world, but with your continued support and action we are hopeful we can achieve a great outcome.

Wishing you the best for the festive season and a happy new year!

(See the newspaper article reporting on the peaceful protest at the recent Focus Group meeting)

Be the first to rate this post

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press | Powering Perths Communities

Western Power Fails Again

by Alan Lonsdale 11/26/2008 9:22:00 AM

WESTERN POWER REJIGS COMMUNITY CONSULTATION APPROACH – AGAIN!

Media Statement 25 November 2008

Western Power’s latest attempt to engage the community in consultation has, like all previous attempts, run into difficulties.  As reported previously in the Hills Gazette (25/10/08), Western Power called for nominations for a focus group to work with it on the first stage of the controversial Powering Perth Communities project, previously known as the Eastern Terminal project. 

The focus group would assist Western Power to select a preferred option for a “tie-in”, which would connect to the metropolitan network a new 330 kV line from Collie to the Perth Hills.  The “tie-in” would be located in Hacketts Gully, the site of Western Power’s previous failed attempt to locate the Eastern Terminal, and of the gantry structure proposed early in 2008.

However, Western Power’s plans for the focus group have already changed.  Due to the lack of response from the community to nominate for the group, Western Power announced that the three focus group sessions scheduled for 15 November, 29 November and 6 December would be cancelled.  In their place a single full day workshop is now planned for 29 November. 

The focus group exercise was roundly condemned by Kalamunda Shire Council at its October meeting and by the action group opposed to Western Power’s proposed Eastern Terminal.  The revised focus group exercise is Western Power’s fifth attempt at community consultation, the first four having failed. 

The Stop the Eastern Terminal Action Group (SETS Group) is dismayed that Western Power has embarked on the latest exercise in contradiction of assurances given by Mark de Laeter, Western Power’s General Manager, Customer Services.  In an address to Kalamunda Shire Council on 11 August, Mr de Laeter acknowledged that Western Power’s previous community consultation attempts had failed and promised a ‘fresh start’.  The ‘fresh start’ would involve working with the community in ‘open book’ style, and agreement with the community on an ‘engagement model’ for consultation. 

 “This latest move by Western Power breaks these promises”, said Dr Alan Lonsdale, spokesperson for the SETS group.  “There has been no consultation with the community about an ‘engagement model’.”  “The new focus group exercise is seriously flawed – because participation is limited to a selected few chosen by Western Power, it disenfranchises virtually all members of the community, and prohibits environmental and other community groups from participating fully.”  “It is certainly not ‘open book’ style.”

In particular, the SETS Group is worried that a decision now concerning a “tie-in” in Hacketts Gully will constrain options for phase 2 of the Powering Perth Communities project.  “The second phase is to involve the selection of a site for a switchyard, or possibly a terminal substation.  Further down the track the community may discover that there is no alternative but to locate this in Hacketts Gully.  It is essential that Western Power fully informs the community now of the factors involved in its planning”, said Dr Lonsdale.  “Western Power’s latest attempt at community consultation is seriously flawed”, he said.

Currently rated 1.4 by 15 people

  • Currently 1.4/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

Community Meetings | Gantry | In the Press | Powering Perths Communities | Site Selection Update

Western Power reneges on promise, Kalamunda Shire expresses concern

by Alan Lonsdale 10/21/2008 9:19:00 PM

Press release

Western Power’s plan for the conduct of a ‘focus group’ to recommend a site for a ‘tie-in’, which would link with a new 330 kV transmission line from Collie to the Perth Hills, was raised at the Ordinary Council Meeting of the Shire of Kalamunda on 20 October 2008.

At the commencement of the meeting Mr John Davenport, co-convenor of the SETS Group, addressed two questions to Council on this latest Eastern Terminal development. In his preamble Mr Davenport reminded councillors of the assurances given by Western Power’s Mark de Laeter when he addressed Council on 11 August.  These included Western Power conducting an 'open-book' style of consultation with the community based on an agreed engagement model, and a complete re-examination of Western Power’s preference for an Eastern Terminal over alternative options, based on sustainability criteria. Councillors also reviewed documents describing Western Power’s “fresh start” to the Eastern Terminal project, and the intended role and operation of the ‘focus group’.

Mr Davenport pointed out that no terms of reference or venue for the ‘focus group’ were provided, and that representatives of local shires and community groups would only be involved if nominated by the ‘focus group’.  He put the following questions to Council:

  1. Has the Shire been involved in any discussions with Western Power to determine an agreed engagement model? – to which the answer was ‘no’.
  2. As custodians of the interests of the Kalamunda community and those residents who will be most affected by this proposal, what course of action will the Shire take concerning this matter.

Council determined that this question should immediately be considered as a matter of urgent business.  The following motion* was moved by Cr Frank Lindsey and seconded by Cr Elizabeth Taylor.

That the Council of the Shire of Kalamunda:

  1. Records its concern at Western Power’s latest move to call for nominations for a 'focus group' to determine the best solution for Phase 1 of the 'Powering Perth's Communities' project, without any terms of engagement with the community being agreed,
  2. Notes that this totally contradicts the undertaking given by Western Power's Mark de Laeter to Council on 11 August 2008, and
  3. Authorises the CEO to write to the Hon Peter Collier, Minister for Energy, and to Western Power expressing these views and
(a) Asking how this amounts to an 'open-book' style of engagement
(b) Demanding that discussion occur with the Shire and community to determine an engagement model before any further work is done on Phase 1,
(c) Requesting Western Power to commit to a full re-examination of the choice of Eastern Terminal and alternative options, with the involvement of all stakeholders, and that
(d) Any re-examination of plans for an Eastern Terminal involves the full set of sustainability principles.

The motion was passed unanimously.

* Note that this wording is based on notes taken at the meeting and may not, word for word, accurately reflect the official minutes, which will not be available for 10 days.

Be the first to rate this post

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press

Western Power disempowers community

by Alan Lonsdale 10/20/2008 9:12:00 PM

Press Release

An action group opposed to Western Power’s proposed Eastern Terminal is outraged at Western Power’s latest attempt at community consultation.  Western Power is currently inviting community members to join a ‘focus group’, which would recommend a site for a ‘tie-in’ to link with a new 330 kV transmission line from Collie to the Perth Hills.

Previously called a ‘gantry” by Western Power, the ‘tie-in’ would constitute a key part of Western Power’s proposals to construct an Eastern Terminal in state forest east of Kalamunda.

The Stop the Eastern Terminal Action Group (SETS Group) is urging community members and organisations NOT to participate in this exercise.

“This latest step totally contradicts assurances given to Kalamunda Shire Council on 11 August by Mark de Laeter, Western Power’s General Manager, Customer Services” said Alan Lonsdale, a spokesperson for the SETS Group.  Mr de Laeter acknowledged that Western Power’s previous community consultation attempts had failed and promised a ‘fresh start’.  As reported in the Hills Gazette on 16 August, the ‘fresh start’ would involve working with the community in ‘open book’ style, and agreement with the community on an ‘engagement model’ for consultation.  Mr de Laeter also stated that “an examination of Western Power’s choice of Eastern Terminal over other alternatives would occur as part of this community consultation process”.  “This latest move by Western Power breaks all these promises”, said Dr Lonsdale.

The SETS group has written to Mr de Laeter protesting “in the strongest possible terms” that this latest announcement has occurred without any agreement on an engagement model.

“This is not a genuine focus group, but a contrived process that would compromise participants”, said Dr Lonsdale.  “Participants would have to sign a declaration that they would abide by conditions set by Western Power, which include assisting Western Power to identify a preferred ‘tie-in’ option.  Members of the ‘focus group’ would be hand picked by Western Power”.  The application form requires applicants to provide extensive personal information including age, education level, interests, membership of social and professional organisations, community involvement, and media usage.

Western Power documents state that successful applicants would receive a paper outlining the options ‘that have been identified to achieve the tie-in, in terms of technical solutions and locations.’  “This clearly contradicts the undertaking Mr de Laeter gave Kalamunda Council and the community for an ‘open book’ review of the choice for all options, including the Eastern Terminal.  Western Power’s previous attempts failed because the community did not trust the integrity of information presented by Western Power about planning assumptions, options and environmental impacts.  The community will again be distrustful if information is shared after options are reviewed. The community must be involved in the review of options from the outset.”

Western Power’s previous attempts at community consultation have been the subject of formal complaints to the WA Ombudsman.  The SETS Group has developed a proposal for community engagement based on international best practice principles and will present this to Western Power representatives on 28 October.  “The Group believes that an essential first step is the establishment of a reference group comprising community and Western Power representatives, which would develop a model for community engagement and then manage the process in an open way”, said Dr Lonsdale.

“The SETS Group is disappointed that Western Power has learnt nothing from the debacle of the first two rounds of community consultation.  This new process merely repeats the gross failings of previous processes.  The community can no longer trust information released by Western Power”.

“While Western Power has chosen the title ‘Powering Perth’s Communities’ for this rebadged process, which is really old wine in new bottles, the reality is that the Corporation is further disempowering the community”, said Dr Lonsdale.

Be the first to rate this post

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags: ,

In the Press

Western Power questions community input!

by Toni Warden 6/25/2008 6:22:00 PM

Western Power have announced that the submission period is to be extended to the 31st July 2008!

Worryingly, Western Power have also been critical of what they called “automated and generic submissions”.   Western Power made these criticisms on it's website recently.  It is suggested by Western Power that these letters (painstakingly set up so that people can have their own say on their concerns about the submission process) do not accurately reflect individual circumstances and opinion of the community.

Clearly Western Power is not reading your letters, or the comments you are writing on the bottom of them.  The irony is that it was Western Power’s horrifically constructed “Site Selection Process Paper” and unreasonably short comment period that prompted the SETS Group to set up a tool for the community to properly and quickly reflect the community’s concerns.

Obviously Western Power is getting the message that the community powerfully rejects its attempt to solely base the site selection to the Kalamunda state forest and Priority 1 water catchment area.  Do you think Western Power really thought the community wouldn’t see what they were trying to do through its “Site Selection Process Paper”?

You still have time to have your say, so please, if you haven’t had a chance yet, or if you know of someone who is equally concerned (after all the state forests belong to all Western Australians), please forward them our website link and ask them to use the wizard, write their thoughts at the end and show Western Power that Eastern Terminal is not needed!

Remember, you can have your say by posting your comments under this article!

Currently rated 1.3 by 6 people

  • Currently 1.333333/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press

Now you see them...now you don't!

by Toni Warden 6/3/2008 8:53:00 PM

Those of you who drive down Mundaring Weir Road or other parts of Kalamunda, may have noticed the SETS Group’s signs around the area. The SETS Group has been trying to make local people and the visitors to the area aware of the Eastern Terminal and the threat it poses to the forest in Kalamunda/Mundaring. But our signs are being systematically stolen!

Signs appearing on the boundary of private properties have vanished in the night. One can only wonder WHO would benefit from removing these signs from public view and public awareness.

Our right to free speech and protest is being stolen away, and people are angry. One property owner was shocked that someone was so brazen as to sneak onto their property and remove what is essentially private property.

As Western Power attempts to keep the devastating size implications of the Eastern Terminal under wraps, these signs are a vital way of informing and reminding the public of the impending threat to us all.

Please, if you notice someone removing these signs, let us know on our contact page, and we will ask the police to investigate the theft. Help us, help you.

Currently rated 5.0 by 1 people

  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press

Kalamunda Shire Opposes Eastern Terminal Substation

by John Davenport 4/11/2008 4:40:00 PM

The SETS Group is delighted with the support that has been demonstrated by the Kalamunda Shire Council in opposing Western Power’s proposed substation.

On Monday, 17 March 2008, the Ordinary Council Meeting saw the following motions passed.

The first motion was proposed by Cr Frank Lindsey and seconded by Cr Margaret Thomas.

Motion:

With respect to the proposal by Western Power to establish an Eastern Terminal substation, the Kalamunda Shire Council:

(i) expresses its vehement opposition to siting of the substation within the study area designated by Western Power as it consists mainly of Priority 1 and Priority 2 water catchment areas, National Parks and State Forest, and consequently is unacceptable on environmental, economic and social grounds; and

(ii) expresses its vehement opposition to the announcement by Western Power of the 7 February 2008 that it is intending to construct a 'gantry' structure near the intersection of Mundaring Weir Road and Bahen Road, Hacketts Gully, without any prior consultation with either the Council or affected residents in Hacketts Gully.

This motion was passed unanimously.

Two other motions were passed by Council, both proposed by Cr Frank Lindsey and seconded by Cr John Giardina.

Motion:

With respect to the proposal by Western Power to establish an Eastern Terminal substation, the Kalamunda Shire Council:

Directs the Chief Executive Officer to advise ratepayers of Council's opposition to Western Power's proposed Eastern Terminal Substation, through the Council's regular advertisement in local newspapers.

Motion:

1. That the Kalamunda Shire Council reaffirms its support for an extension to the Kalamunda National Park, so as to incorporate within it, the state forest in Hacketts Gully; and further expresses its support for an extension to the Mundaring National Park and the Pickering Brook National Park, so as to incorporate local and state forests and link up with the Kalamunda National Park.

2. That the Chief Executive Officer write to the Darling Range Regional Park Community Advisory Committee, the WA Minister for the Environment, The Premier, the WA Minister for Planning and Infrastructure and the Leader of the Opposition, seeking their support for the extension to these national parks.

Councillors voted 9-2 in favour of the motions.

Please read the Hills Gazette articles entitled "Council speaks out on station" (22/03/08) and "Hacketts Gully plea" (29/03/08).

We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Councillors of the Shire of Kalamunda for their support of these motions.  We would further like to express our gratitude towards Cr Frank Lindsey, Cr Margaret Thomas and Cr John Giardina.  We would encourage our supporters to email or ring these Councillors and express their appreciation as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be the first to rate this post

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press

SETS Group Presents Deputation to Council

by John Davenport 3/18/2008 9:50:00 PM

The SETS Group was invited by the Kalamunda Shire Council to present a deputation to the Council's Planning Services Committee on 11 February 2008.  SETS Group members Dr Alan Lonsdale and Toni Warden addressed the Committee.  The aims of the deptuation were to update Councillors on the work of the SETS Group, to inform them of the 18 year history of the Eastern Terminal proposal, to stress the vital role the Shire has previously played in opposing Western Power's proposal, and to propose actions by the Council.  The deputation also presented evidence supporting the SETS Group's belief that Western Power has selected a preferred site, and that we are now suspicious of the genuineness of any further consultation processes Western Power may engage the community in.

The SETS Group recommended that:

1. Council:

a) adopts the view that, whilst recognising the necessity for the upgrading of the power transmission network, the siting of a terminal substatiion in the study area, which consists mainly of P1 and P2 water catchment and National Parks and state forest, is totally unacceptable on environmetal, economic and social grounds;

b) urges Western Power to adopt an option that positions any future terminal substation outside the study area;

c) expresses outrage that Western Power has announced its intention to construct a "gantry" structure near the intersection of Mundaring Weir Road and Bahen Road, Hacketts Gully, without any consultation with the Council, directly affected residents in Hacketts Gully, or the community.

2. Council issues a public statement expressing vehement opposition to Western Power's proposal for an Eastern Terminal substation, and:

a) writes accordingly to Western Power, the Minister for Energy, the Minister for the Environment, the Minister for Water and the Premier;

b) issues a statement to the local press; 

c) writes to the Shires of Mundaring an dGosnells informing them of Council's view and inviting them to join an alliance to oppose the proposal. 

3. Council informs ratepayers about the proposal and its potential consequences, and Council's concerns and opposition, through:

a) the Council's regular advertisement in local newspapers;

b) the Council's website;

c) providing a link from the Council website to the "stopeasternterminal.org.au" website.

4. Council requests the Chief Executive Officer to prepare a report to Council on the likely impacts on residents and businesses in the Shire, including tourism, orcharding, viticulture, the economy of the Shire, the environment, visual amenity, and recreation [similar to the report prepared for Building & Services Committee in 1992].

 

 

Be the first to rate this post

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press

Western Power Isn't Consulting with the Community

by Toni Warden 2/18/2008 8:38:00 PM

On the 13 February 2008, Western Power arranged a meeting with residents of Bahen Road, Hackett’s Gully, to finally inform them about the construction of the proposed Gantry.  Despite Western Power’s previous assurances: “including full and proper consultation with the general public and local community” and “formally advise all the landowners whose properties are in the immediate vicinity of the site about the proposal” they chose to inform the residents of Hackett's Gully after they issued a press statement.  This also meant that they chose not to conduct the meeting in a "consulting manner" but rather an "informing manner ".

What is of great concern to the SETS Group is Western Power’s lack of commitment to consult with the general public and local community about this development.  Mundaring Weir Road is the environmental link between Kalamunda and Mundaring Weir precinct, and is a popular tourist route that attracts income to local businesses.  The development of further electrical “eye sores” in this area is abhorrent both to local residents and the broader community.

A spokesperson for the residents stated “We are extremely disappointed that a deal has been done” and when asked what they would have wanted if they had been consulted by Western Power, the spokesperson stated “Residents at the meeting indicated that if they had a choice, it wouldn’t go ahead. 

A recent newspaper article in the Hills Gazette (16/02/08) made reference to a letter from Western Power to Hackett's Gully residents dated 9 May 2002.  The letter stated “Following a review of the long term electrical load requirements for the east metropolitan area, we wish to advise that a terminal substation will no longer required at Location 3897 Mundaring Weir Road, Hackett’s Gully.  We also have no intention to acquire an alternative site in areas close to Hackett’s Gully as previously advised.”  The spokesperson for the residents also stated “We feel that we’ve been let down.  Big dollars have been invested here by some residents and that has been put in jeopardy. 

In Western Power's media release (7 February 2008) they describe the "temporary" gantry as "Four transmission structures, considting of one tower, two poles and a gantry...".  Mr Ian Buchanan of Western Power, went on to say "The Gantry will enable interconnection with the high voltage network allowing for a delay, in the short term, on the construction of Eastern Terminal.  Once Eastern Terminal is developed the Gantry will be removed, as will one of the poles."  Members of the SETS Group, asked the Project Officer, Mr Adrain Stubbings, if by that statement from the press release, Western Power had selected Hackett's Gully as the site for the Eastern Terminal sub-station.  His reply was, "Western Power have not yet selected a site."  Mr Stubbings was then asked what would happen to the Gantry if Western Power decided not to proceed with the Eastern Terminal sub-station?  His reply was "The Gantry will then remain in place for good."

Spokesperson for the SETS Group, Dr Alan Lonsdale, added “The issue has been very stressful, causing a number of Hackett’s Gully residents to move out because of the unresolved threat of a substation.  If you read our History of Hackett’s Gully and Western Power page, you will understand the residents’ frustration and that Western Power has had them walking on egg shells for some 11 years.  It is important that everyone in the community shows their support for the Hackett’s Gully residents by informing themselves about the history of this project.  It is also important for residents to be aware that there is a serious lack of ethics involved in Western Power’s tactics.  If you want to help the residents, you can write a personal letter to the Ombudsman complaining of their lack of consultation about the gantry development.  You can also further assist by writing to Alan Carpenter and Fran Logan, asking them to set up an ethics committee into the past and present actions of Western Power.

Be the first to rate this post

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press

Western Power Temporary Gantry for Hackett's Gully, Kalamunda

by Toni Warden 2/18/2008 3:08:00 PM

Western Power released a press statement on 7 February 2007 announcing that the proposed Eastern Terminal substation will be delayed for 12 months, providing "the community with more time to be involved in the site selection."

The main thrust of the article was to inform the community of plans to building a temporary structure, called a gantry, to interconnect with their high voltage network enabling a delay to the Eastern Terminal project.  This gantry would be erected near the corner of Mundaring Weir and Bahen Roads, Hackett’s Gully east of Kalamunda.  Western Power's Mr Ian Buchanan stated “This is the only 1 site that allowed the structures to be located outside National Parks, away from private property and minimised the social and environmental impact.

 

He further stated, “To allow additional time to consult with residents in the hills Western Power will develop the SET first.”   SET stands for South Eastern Terminal (near Byford).  We note this with concern, as it again changes Western Power’s stance on what they need to do to secure power for Perth; now stating that two substations are required to provide for Perth’s power needs. This was not the scenario presented to the community in October and to the many organisations, including the Shire of Kalamunda, who requested separate information sessions with Western Power officials. At that time Western Power identified 10 options to provide transmission solutions to power supply constraints. These were presented as an ‘either/or’ solution rather than an ‘either/and’ solution.  Mr Buchanan also stated that, “The development of SET in Byford will not alleviate the need for the ET project.  Both projects were in Western Power’s future plans, it was just a matter of deciding which was developed first.

 

 

SETS Group released a press statement on 7 February 2007

 

Dr Alan Lonsdale, the Group Convenor, referring to the proposal for a temporary gantry, stated “This is not an “innovative solution”, as we believe from studying Western Power’s reports that such a development is not urgent.”  This is in line with the Group’s understanding that Western Power has planned the development of ET for the past 18 years.  He further underpinned this statement by reporting that the Eastern Terminal substation project was not even mentioned in Western Power’s Transmission and Distribution Annual Planning Report for 2007.

 

Dr Lonsdale went on to say “Our belief is that Western Power’s preferred site is still in Hackett’s Gully”.  This was the area Western Power has been trying to secure a piece of the State Forest to house Eastern Terminal in for all of those years.  This is extremely concerning for the residents of Hackett’s Gully as Western Power had ruled out Hackett’s Gully in May 2002, in a letter in which they state “Following a review of the long term electrical load requirements for the east metropolitan area, we wish to advise that a terminal station is no longer required at Location 3897 Mundaring Weir Road, Hackett’s Gully. We also have no intention to acquire an alternative site in areas close to Hackett’s Gully as previously advised.

 

Dr Lonsdale went on to say “This latest development graphically illustrates the community’s concerns, as there has been no advice to or consultation with residents of Hackett’s Gully.”  The SETS Group wrote to the Managing Director of Western Power on 3/12/2007 formally complaining about Western Power's community consultation process.  A reply has still not been received.

 

In that letter, the SETS Group requested:

Accordingly, as a matter of urgency and for the reasons outlined in this letter, we formally request

(a) that decisions concerning the specific location and the construction of the proposed terminal substation are deferred until adequate consultation with the community has occurred, and the matters raised in our forthcoming submission are considered,

(b) that Western Power recommences the consultation process, ensuring that all key stakeholders are consulted, all relevant information is provided in documents that are readily available to stakeholders, and adequate time is available for consultation,

(c) that the process is such as to ensure that sustainability assessment and stakeholder engagement are integrated with planning processes, and

(d) that the SETS Action Group is provided with early advice on the revised timetable for decision making and planning for this project.

 

In summing up the SETS Group’s reaction to Western Power’s announcement, Dr Lonsdale reported that the Group was greatly disappointed that there has been no reply from the Managing Director but, along with directly affected residents, have learned about this latest development through the media.

 

The SETS Group is left to conclude that Western Power has no intention of genuinely consulting with the general community.

Currently rated 1.0 by 2 people

  • Currently 1/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tags:

In the Press