LNP to Underground Powerline

12 Mar 2009 11:42 AMJann Stuckey

12 March 2009

The LNP has responded to a long-running community campaign by residents between Mudgeeraba and Currumbin by announcing plans to underground two sections of the proposed power line where the community impacts are greatest if they are elected to Government on March 21st.

LNP Mines and Energy Spokesman, Mr Seeney MP was joined to announce the decision on site by Jann Stuckey LNP Member for Currumbin, and Michael Hart and Ros Bates candidates for Burleigh and Mudgeeraba.

“Stuckey, Hart and Bates have fought tooth and nail for residents who live in their electorates and are to be congratulated for their efforts. They are community champions unlike the Labor Members for Burleigh and Mudgeeraba who have refused to fight for their constituents,” said Mr Seeney

“The LNP will underground a 4.4km section from Elanora Water Treatment Plant to Currumbin Substation and another underground section at Asperia Street would be extended by an additional 800 metres.

“The LNP had allocated $27M to meet the costs that Energex has calculated to ensure the most contentious parts of this power line project were put underground.

“We have had a long standing policy to underground power lines where ever possible in areas of high community impact and this is one such area where we believe the extra cost of undergrounding is justified to reduce the collateral impact on the local community.

“The impact on local communities is a vital part of planning for power line projects of this sort and our policy about power line planning puts greater emphasis on consultation with local communities.

“Proper meaningful consultation means listening to what the community has to say and in this case the proposal to put a high voltage transmission line through established urban communities has resulted in a storm of local protest, including petitions of over 6000 residents and public rallies.

“A responsible Government with a commitment to consultation should take notice of that and the LNP certainly has listened to the community’s concerns.”

“Community concern over the project was heightened by news that a major insurer would not cover homes close to the proposed alignment if the overhead option were to proceed,” said Ms Stuckey.

“Ever since the State Government proposed its plan for an overhead line, I have received a steady stream of locals concerned about its impact. On their behalf I have made requests for meetings with the Labor Mines and Energy Minister, Geoff Wilson MP, to no avail.”