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20232208 David Littleproud speaking to media

Farmers rally against Labors secretive Borumba Pumped Hydro project

Farmers and families have rallied against Labor’s secretive plans for the Borumba Pumped Hydro project, fearing it will destroy prime agricultural land, pristine rainforest, and animal habitats in the Kilkivan area. Concerned locals met with Federal Leader of The Nationals David Littleproud and Wide Bay MP Llew O’Brien, warning that Labor’s hydro project could have devastating consequences.

It comes after Labor hid details about the project in this year’s Budget, with all costs from 2024, including forward estimates, removed.

“Labor needs to explain what it is trying to hide when it comes to the future of the Kilkivan area,” Mr. Littleproud said.

“There is money in the Budget for this project that hasn’t been disclosed. The Nationals have made it clear we will never spend any federal money on this project because we don’t support it.”

Mr. Littleproud added Labor’s reckless race to achieve 82 percent renewables meant locals were facing the enormous burden of having not just the Borumba Pumped Hydro, but also transmission lines plus the Forest Wind Turbine Complex all in one electorate forced onto them.

“The Nationals wholeheartedly stand by and support Wide Bay farmers and locals worried about Labor destroying the very thing renewables are designed to protect – the environment,” Mr. Littleproud said.

“Queensland Hydro was also asked to submit an environmental report last year, detailing how it will mitigate environmental concerns and protect water quality, but that still hasn’t happened, despite site works continuing to go ahead. If the project is so good then why is everything being kept secret? Farmers and families just want common sense to prevail.”

Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien said Wide Bay was the battleground where local property owners were standing up for their rights and rightfully demanding their voices be heard.

“The Borumba Pumped Hydro and Forest Wind projects and their associated transmission lines will threaten communities from the Fraser Coast to Gympie, and through the South Burnett, affecting private landholders, natural habitats, and remnant vegetation, and governments must listen to the voices of our community,” Mr. O’Brien said.

“The Forest Wind project alone will span an area of forest that’s 65 kilometers by 30 kilometers in size, not to mention each turbine will have a concrete foundation of up to 30 meters long.

“This project, with its 226 giant turbines with blades spanning a diameter of 170 meters, is touted as having the potential to be the largest wind farm in Australia, but it would be located right on the doorstep of the Ramsar-listed internationally significant Great Sandy Strait.

“What will be the impact of these giant wind turbines on protected native and migratory species? Why would we rip up forest to lay down concrete? It’s paving paradise to put up a ‘parking lot’ or worse, and just doesn’t make sense.”

Katy McCallum from the Kilkivan Action Group said the local community “completely objected” to Labor’s plans.

“Our major concern is the destruction of our stunning district and irreparable damage to the environment, where so much amazing flora and fauna live,” Mrs. McCallum said.

“The Borumba Pumped Hydro project has not met its requirements under social license and nobody in our area wants it.

“If the Forest Wind project goes ahead between Maryborough and Gympie, it will be the biggest turbine complex to date, including up to 226 turbines, at more than 300 meters in height, that will be seen from all over the region.”

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