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The Queensland Government is committed to increasing the production and use of renewable energy. Wind farms form a key component of the response to this commitment. While wind farms generate renewable energy, proposals for this type of development must be carefully considered and balanced against the three core objectives of liveability, sustainability and prosperity.

The wind farm state code, supported by its planning guideline (PDF icon 1.05 MB), provides a consistent, coordinated, whole-of-government approach to the assessment and regulation of wind farm development across Queensland. The code and guideline will facilitate quality renewable energy outcomes whilst protecting communities from any adverse impacts as a result of wind farm development.

The code and guideline will support the role of the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning (DILGP), via the State Assessment and Referral Agency (SARA), as the assessment manager for all wind farm proposals in Queensland.

The purpose of the wind farm state code is to protect individuals, communities and the environment from adverse impacts as a result of the construction, operations and decommissioning of wind farm development.

The guideline assists applicants in preparing development applications for wind farm proposals and to provide assistance in responding to performance outcomes and acceptable outcomes of the code. It provides guidance in relation to required technical assessments and suggested further reading/information.

The wind farm state code is contained within the State Development Assessment Provisions Module 20.

Preparation of the code and guideline and recent consultation

The preparation of the code and guideline was based on expert technical advice, the review of recent and emerging research, the detailed review of national and international best practice (including existing frameworks in place across Australia and New Zealand), and extensive consultation with key inter departmental and external stakeholders.

The draft code and guideline were first released for public consultation from 22 April to 13 May 2014. During this time, more than 100 submissions were received. The draft documents were released for a second round of public consultation on 16 October 2015 for eight weeks. During this time, 60 submissions were received. In addition to the public consultation process, targeted consultation has occurred with state government departments, peak bodies and industry.

All submissions and findings from the consultation process were considered in detail in the preparation of the final documents. Given the extensive consultation process, the code and guideline represent best practice in the assessment of wind farm development.

Wind farm state code FAQs

A comprehensive FAQ document (PDF icon 100 KB) has been prepared to assist the implementation of the wind farm state code and guideline.

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On 3 July 2017, Queensland started operating under new planning legislation – the Planning Act 2016. Information on this page relates to the previous legislation – the Sustainable Planning Act 2009. Learn more about the new planning system.