Appealing underground cable ruling in Tasmania

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Hydro Tasmania is appealing against a ruling that it must put a planned 110,000 volt transmission line, which would carry energy from the Studland Bay stage of Woolnorth Wind Farm, underground. Waratah-Wynyard and Burnie Councils in Tasmania issued an order to bury the cable as a condition of planning approval, citing concerns about the effects of electro-magnetic fields. Hydro Tasmania, however, says underground cabling does not significantly reduce the level of low frequency magnetic fields, while the cost would put the financial viability of the project at risk. The company plans to work with both councils to try to resolve the matter, says Hydro Tasmania's Gustav Bodini: "The Studland Bay wind farm development is important to increasing Tasmania's electricity generation capacity. Hydro Tasmania wants to bring forward construction of the wind farm to help alleviate any potential constraints on electricity supply resulting from low hydro storages."

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