A new property tax planned by Victoria's government could significantly hit profits for the state's smaller wind farm operators, says the Australian Wind energy Association (AusWEA). Under the proposals, all power generators will have to pay government a flat fee of $A40,000 ($30,000), plus $A900 ($685) for each megawatt each year. For operators of wind farms of 30 MW or less, the flat fee means they will effectively pay more per megawatt than larger operators: operators of a 12 MW project will pay just over A$4200/MW, while for a 70 MW wind farm the cost is just under A$1500/MW. "We want to ensure that wind farms are getting an equitable deal," says AusWEA's Dominique la Fontaine. "It is inappropriate for wind farms to be lumbered with extra burdens simply because they operate on a smaller scale than large energy producers and depend on an intermittent renewable resource."
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