Around 80 people have taken horses, dogs, cattle trucks, CFA vehicles and farm machinery to an Ausnet-Mondo drop-in session at Ballan – to show how vehemently they oppose a high-voltage overhead powerline.

The Western Victorian Transmission Network Project session is on at the Ballan football clubrooms until 6pm (Thursday), but opponents got there first at 1pm.

Transmission lines protest – Ballan 15.10.20

Moorabool Online & M.W.I. teamed up to ask Moorabool locals how they feel about high voltage overhead transmission lines proposed for the shire.A protest was held at a Ausnet Services/Mondo drop in session this afternoon in Ballan.

Posted by Melbourne West Imagery on Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Protestors say the 500kV line should go underground because it will have a 60m-plus easement ‘strip’ and locals will not be allowed to farm underneath. They also fear the risk of bushfires, threats to birds and high winds causing the towers or lines to fall.

Signage included calls for Victorian Energy, Environment and Climate Change Minister Lily D’Ambrosio to visit the region or become involved in meetings with locals.

** Ausnet Services said in a statement it would continue to engage with the community and to understand and address concerns.

“As COVID19 restrictions are starting to ease, we’re able to provide even more opportunities to meet with the community and we encourage everyone to get involved and talk to the team,”Corpotrate SAffiars Manager Helina Lilley said.

“Head to our website to have your say on the online mapping tool, give us a call on (03) 9021 0674 or send an email to info@westvictnp.com.au.”

** At least six of Moorabool’s 20 election candidates were also present at the protest. Another two attended a drop-in session at Gordon on Wednesday.

The Moorabool and Central Highlands Power Alliance is fighting a proposed 190km 500kV powerline from Sydenham to Bulgana near Ararat which developers Ausnet Services and Mondo say will have pylons up to 80m high.

The project would also involve the creation of a new substation north of Ballarat – possibly in the Clarkes Hill area, where the line would be able to intersect with a Ballarat-Bendigo transmission line.

RELATED STORY: Moorabool report shows underground lines viable — Ausnet to hold drop-in sessions

RELATED STORY: Planning Minister: Vic Govt supports ‘affordable’ powerlines

RELATED STORY: Myrniong teen tells ScoMo to put powerlines underground

RELATED STORY: Fears Powerlines will destroy Bunding’s Wedge-Tailed Eagle

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Gabrielle Hodson
Author: Gabrielle Hodson

Online, radio, TV and print journalist since 1993. BA (Hum) majoring in journalism Deakin University. Follow us on Twitter - https://twitter.com/MooraboolOnline I'd love to hear your news tips 🙂 Email -- news@mooraboolonloine.com.au OR send us a message via Facebook -- https://www.facebook.com/MooraboolOnline