Albany Wind Farm Expansion - Hidden Valley Campsite to be relocated
Work has begun on the Grasmere wind farm - part of the expansion of the Albany Wind Farm. The six-turbine Grasmere wind farm will be installed at the western end of the highly successful Albany wind farm. Though they have different names, the wind farms will merge.
To safely carry out the works associated with constructing the wind farm extension, 4WD tracks have been temporarily closed and a section of the Bibbulmun Track diverted to an existing 4WD track running parallel to the coast. To ensure the safety of bushwalkers, no vehicles will be permitted to use this track during the closure. This diversion is NOT a pleasant experience for walkers! Our advice is to avoid this area if possible until the realignment has taken place!
Extensive consultation has taken place between Verve Energy, DEC and the Foundation to assess the impact of the extension on walkers and to devise a solution to minimise the visual and auditory effects. As a result, Hidden Valley campsite will be relocated further west to take it right out of the wind farm. Additionally, a new campsite will be built between the wind farm and Albany in the Tonndirrup National Park. This will result in three shorter days of approximately 13km each out of Albany, as opposed to the existing 19.5km to Hidden Valley and 17km to Torbay campsite. This is an excellent outcome for walkers and will be implemented in line with the completion of the wind farm in early 2012.
The 14MW Grasmere Wind Farm will produce around 44GWh of electricity each year and, together with Albany Wind Farm, will meet 80% of Albany’s electricity needs with clean, inexhaustible renewable energy. Grasmere will reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions by 43,500 tonnes per year from electricity production, equivalent to taking 10,000 cars off the road.
The new turbines will be placed on the coast using the same pattern and spacing as the existing wind farm and will be built to the same high environmental and social standards. The new wind farm will need a new underground power line connection for the entire 14km back to the Albany sub-station, so no overhead wires will be required.
For more information visit www.verveenergy.com.au
The Grasmere wind farm is on track to be completed by early 2012, The six new turbines will be installed over the coming weeks - and you can watch the progress on a live interactive web cam.
The realigned Bibbulmun Track, re-located Hidden Valley campsite and a new campsite are also under construction. Not long now until we have 49 campsites on the Bibb Track!
Verve Energy's Grasmere Wind Farm is now complete. As part of this project, the Bibbulmun Track has been realigned and the Hidden Valley campsite has been removed.
Two new campsites, Sandpatch and Muttonbird, have been built to accommodate the realignment.
A new Denmark/Albany Map 8 is now available. For more information visit the Track Conditions in the Denmark/Albany section by section guideon the Bibb Track website.
Approximately 3km of Track immediately to the west of the old Hidden Valley Campsite has been constructed. Walkers are asked to bear in mind that, whilst the new section of Track is open, there still remains work to be done and walkers should take care.