Renewable energy is energy that comes from natural resources such as sunlight, wind and rain that are renewable (naturally replenished).
The NSW Government has introduced a tiered approvals regime for renewable energy systems, to ensure the level of assessment is appropriately tailored to the scale and type of the system. Renewable energy proposals are considered under different parts of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 as outlined below.
Large-scale renewable energy proposals
Under State Environmental Planning Policy (State and Regional Development) 2011, electricity generating works including renewable energy proposals such as wind or solar farms with a capital cost of more than $30 million (or $10 million in an environmentally sensitive area) are considered as State Significant Development under Part 4 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
Small-scale renewable energy proposals
Under State Environmental Planning Policy (Infrastructure) 2007 (“Infrastructure SEPP”), there are a range of assessment pathways for small-scale renewable energy proposals, which are tailored to the size, location and level of environmental impact of the proposal.
Small-scale renewable energy systems covered by the Infrastructure SEPP include photovoltaic systems, solar hot water systems, solar air heating systems, small wind turbine systems and wind monitoring towers. Additional provisions may be included in the relevant local council’s Local Environmental Plan (LEP) and/or Development Control Plan (DCP).
- Major Project Register – assessment documentation for major projects approved or under assessment (eg search under 'wind' or 'solar')
- Renewable energy resources of NSW map – NSW Division of Resource and Geosciences
- National Wind Farm Commissioner – including large-scale solar and storage
- Energy NSW Hub.
For further information, please contact us.
Page last updated: 16/11/2022