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10 months ago

We are working together with the Happy Valley, Flagstaff Hill, Aberfoyle Park and O'Halloran Hill community as we propose to install approximately nine megawatts (MW) of solar panels at the Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve.

Our customers at Happy Valley, Flagstaff Hill, Aberfoyle Park and O'Halloran Hill are invited to join the conversation and tell us what's most important to them.


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  • Janetlesley 5 months ago
    I chose to live in Flagstaff Hill because of the wildlife and the aesthetic nature of the area. The yellow tail black cockatoos, the kangaroos, the pines and the native veg all significantly enhance my quality of life. Every night I get great joy as the flocks of cockatoos fly overhead at dusk. A leaflet on the SA Water website tells me that the cockies are threatened and suggests we should be planting more vegetation to assist them to prosper. It therefore seems completely incomprehensible that SAWater is proposing to chop down a major food source of the birds! Hypocritical!I agree with other people on this site that the pines were never meant as a plantation - pines were planted to keep dust down and prevent leave litter from getting into the reservoir. Rip down the plantation and we will have to rename the suburb Happy Valley to - Lifeless Valley. Please give more consideration to the beautiful cockies.. (I'm happy to pay more for my water if it means the birds get to keep their home!)
    • Admin Commented Alyssa 5 months ago
      Thank you for your feedback and your interest in the flora and fauna of the reservoir reserve; the biodiversity of the area is also important to us. An ecological assessment of the whole reservoir reserve found that ForestrySA’s pine plantation is the least biodiverse area in the reserve. There is little or no understorey vegetation and no hollow-forming trees for wildlife nesting in the pine plantation. Kangaroos and the Yellow Tailed Black Cockatoo are found throughout the reservoir reserve. Remnant vegetation and revegetation areas provide habitat for the Yellow Tailed Black Cockatoo. The cockatoo has a varied diet that is obtained from a range of habitats, many of which are present in the reservoir reserve. A large portion of their diet is comprised of wood boring grubs and seeds of native species, such as Allocasurina (SheOaks) and Haekeas. The amount of pines proposed to be harvested comprises approximately five per cent of the total area of vegetation cover available at the reservoir for native animal species to forage. The cockatoos are not dependent on the pine plantations for food and revegetated areas could include species that provide food closer to the cockatoo’s natural diet.Alyssa@sawater
  • bethechange19 5 months ago
    Why can't we have floating solar panels on the reservoir instead? Other countries around the world have been doing it including Japan, China and Singapore. They are also more efficient working on water according to this link - https://www.nextnature.net/2017/06/floating-solar-arrays/. They would be less effort to install as no land would have to be cleared, and they wouldn't be an eyesore to the public. The reservoir can easily cater for 30,000 panels.
  • Annie 5 months ago
    Having lived in Flagstaff Hill and Aberfoyle Park since 1974, I am disappointed with the response from both S.A. Water and the Environment and Water Minister, regarding the harvesting of our precious Aleppo Pines in the Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve. The Aleppo Pines have a life span of at least 150 years , with these pines being planted in 1949 and1951, they still have many years ahead to provide an essential wind break, to help limit evaporation from the Happy Valley Reservoir and act as an excellent carbon sink.The idea of removing these wonderful Aleppo Pines and replacing them with a solar farm and ugly earth mounds , may I say , is absolutely ludicrous.There are many acres across South Road where the solar farm may be built but of course this may impact upon Minister David Speirs’s ideas regarding Glenthorne National Park. Perhaps better, in my opinion, than removing “our precious Aleppo Pines”, which have been an important part of our community for a very long time and should be left alone.
  • Esjay 6 months ago
    Have alternative panel layouts been considered for this site? If an east-west array type system was used this would mean the required number of panels could still be installed and leave at least a 40mtr buffer zone of the pine trees on the road boundaries. I did a concept drawing over the weekend but am not sure how to upload it. The east-west type system will reduce the solar footprint by 40% compared to the north facing systems. I am a resident of Flagstaff Pines and would be very disappointed to lose our area's identity and landmark!
  • Nick & Sam 6 months ago
    Next Public Meeting - Can you please post the details around the venue and time for the meeting of the 14th of May on your web site. This is better than just some criptic "please contact us for details". Transparency is key with any public consultation process. Thank you
  • rickhardy 7 months ago
    From the comments on the forum so far, most of my fellow residents, for one reason or another, are opposed to your 36,000 panel installation. I must admit, although I agree with some of the ecological considerations, it really would be an exceptionally large eyesore as one drives south on South or east on Black.A simple look at the Google Maps Satellite Image of the site shows several areas, with usefully marked tracks, that might be used for the installation and keep the eyesore away from a discerning public eye. https://www.google.com/maps/place/O'Halloran+Hill+SA+5158/@-35.0559661,138.5668572,1103m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x6ab0d9e3f2987e7d:0x5033654628ebb80!8m2!3d-35.064!4d138.553This may or may not have copied the way several may wish to have it but the information is there.If one commences at the NW intersection of tracks 3a and 3b, then proceeds ENE along 3a to 3c, then E along 3c to 5b, then S along 5b to a point where (if projected) 3d would meet 5b, then W along the projected and actual 3d to 3b, then N to 3a. {The defined area}This defined area is slightly bigger than that you are considering in the area of contention, so you might fit in more than your considered 36,000 panels!But the significance of this suggestion is that it would not impact on the forest at the corner of Black and South and would largely be out of the public eye. Given all of the comments in the forum about how ugly and destructive of the visual appeal of our O'Halloran Hill your suggestion is, don't you think this might be a worthy option?I remain,yours sincerely,C. R. (Rick) Hardy
    • Admin Commented Alyssa 6 months ago
      Hi Rick, Thank you for providing feedback and your detailed suggestion for an alternative location for the solar panel installation. As part of our site selection process we carried out surveys of the Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve to identify the best area for the solar panels. The preservation of native vegetation, suitability of the land to avoid steep slopes and avoidance of existing operational infrastructure were important factors in selecting the area. The chosen area is relatively flat, free of native vegetation and avoids existing infrastructure.The area you have identified is sloped toward the south, which would make solar panel installation more challenging and reduce efficiency, and parts are also currently used for operational activities associated with the Happy Valley Water Treatment Plant. We are working with the community to develop landscape designs for the site, including how to best screen the solar panels and maximise the visual amenity of the area. Landscaping along Black Road and South Road could be planted with the native vegetation to provide a screen between the road and solar installation. Native vegetation used in the landscaping would support the wildlife found in other areas of the reserve. Alyssa@sawater
  • Mint 7 months ago
    I stand strongly against the removal of the trees/pines in the area. I'm not concerned that the pines aren't a 'native' species, they are fine trees. If some are dying, please plant other trees in their place. A thin margin of shrubs to obscure the view of a solar farm does not ease my concern that there would ultimately be fewer trees and fewer areas for wildlife among other benefits (I imagine) a large number of trees delivers.With the reservoir expected to become a part of Glenthorn National Farm, it seems like a much better idea to preserve it as a natural area.While I support solar endeavours in general this may not be viable for this location.
    • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 7 months ago
      Thank you for your comments and concerns Mint. As previously mentioned, the Aleppo pines were planted by ForestrySA on our land from 1949 to 1951. The pine trees were always intended to be harvested and are several years overdue for felling.A significant amount of native vegetation buffer will remain between the proposed solar panels and the reservoir, which will support sediment and erosion control. In addition, sediment controls will be constructed to manage potential run off in the vicinity of the solar array, including during periods of extreme rainfall. All comments, concerns and ideas are recorded as part of the consultation process for this project. Engagement with local residents is ongoing through a reference group. Further engagement will continue online through this forum. Andrew@SAWater
  • Nick & Sam 8 months ago
    My family and I live in Flagstaff Pines and have several questions and concerns in relation to the proposed development.1) What is the regulatory approval process for this development (local, state, federal)?2) Has an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) been prepared (being prepared) and is this available for public review?3) Has an Economic study been prepared and is this available for public review?The location selected for this development seems poorly thought out and primarily driven by the fact that SA Water owns the land and it is close to High Voltahe (HV) power lines for access to the grid.Has SA Water considered partnering with other proposed/operational solar developments elsewhere in the state. (http://www.renewablessa.sa.gov.au/topic/investor-information/case-studies/solar-energy-projects). These developments across SA are located next to existing HV lines (Riverland, Tailem Bend, Port Augusta, Jamestown) and would be provide a more balanced investment for SA Water customers and taxpayers whilst still achiving the SA Water goal of a Zero Cost Energy Future. These options would also have both a lower environmental and social impact.Any EIS would have to consider these options as part of its assessment. It is imperiteve that this be provided to the public for review. All options assessments need to be disclosed to ensure that SA Water customers and taxpayers are not being unduly impacted. Afterall SA Water is a SA Government business enterprise.I will also be providing these questions to my local member - Steve Murray (davenport@parliament.sa.gov.au) to better undestand his and the Governments position on this matter.I look forward to your response.
    • Nick & Sam 8 months ago
      Andrew@SA Water - three days and still waiting for some response to what are pretty straightforward questions. Has an EIS been prepared? - YES/NO Has an economic assessment been undertaken of the proposal? - YES/NO Are these studies available to the public for review/comment? - YES/NO Reviewing the posts below and responses I get the feeling that this developed is fully approved and will be developed. The consultation process being conduct to date has not been transparent or fully inclusive with impacted stakeholders. There is a complete lack of information to make any informed assessment of the potential impact or not of the proposed development. I now have an addtional question - Do you have a stakeholder management plan for this project? YES/NO Is this available for the public? YES/NO
      • Admin Commented Alyssa 8 months ago
        Hi Nick and SamThank you for your feedback, a member of the project team will provide a response to your questions soon. Alyssa@sawater
      • Admin Commented Alyssa 7 months ago
        Hi Nick and Sam, To trigger an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) a project must be declared a Major Project by the Minister for Planning. In making such a declaration, the Minister needs to be satisfied that the project is of major environmental, social or economic significance and that the declaration is necessary to support the assessment rather than using other development assessment processes. A range of criteria are considered in determining this including the scale and level of potential impacts being considered major. In this case, the proposed solar panel installation would not meet the criteria given its scale. Instead, we will be seeking development authorisation under the Crown Development assessment process, which is the assessment process typically used for the provision of public infrastructure. Our Happy Valley Reservoir and Water Treatment Plant currently supplies water to over 40 per cent of Adelaide and consumes 8,500 to 10,000 megawatt hours (MWH) of electricity per annum. Energy is one of our biggest costs and our Zero Cost Energy Future initiative will see us install approximately 152 MW of solar generation and 25 MW of energy storage across about 70 of our sites around the State by 2020. Economic assessments are carried out at each site to determine if the installation of solar panels will provide value for money. We only proceed with a site that represents a good return for investment. Engagement has been occurring with local residents since late 2018, and is ongoing. We are working with the community to develop landscape designs for the Happy Valley site. This will include native plantings which will support the wildlife found in other areas of the reserve. We are having visual impressions developed to demonstrate how landscaping will screen the solar panels and enhance the visual amenity of the area. We will continue to consult with the community prior to ForestrySA harvesting the pine plantation.Alyssa@sawater
        • WatersMK 7 months ago
          Wind turbines would be a far better solution because they can be strategically placed AWAY from residential properties along the Flagstaff road and everyone is happy and it is not reliant on the sun as the breeze does not go to sleep
        • Nick & Sam 7 months ago
          Alyssa, Thank you for the response, although it addresses part of the questions I raised it does not cover them all. Where is the project currently in the Crown Development Application process? Have you lodged the application? Is there a notice sent to adjacent landholders informing them of the application? What is the public input/appeal process in this application process?With regards to the economic analysis you have missed the point of my question. My question relates to an option assessment analysis covering exisiting or proposed renewable developments elsewhere in the state not just limited to the ones proposed by SA Water on SA Water land and to provide a comparative Net Present Value (NPV) of each. The NPV for each option should determine the economic payback and over what period at todays dollar value. I find it difficult that existing/proposed large scale renewable developments that SA Water could partner with do not offer a better NPV. Can you provide more information around this economic assessment and the NPV for this project. As taxpayers we have a right to understand where our money is being spent and the return on this investment.Finally, I do have concerns woth the consultaion. The language in your responses to myself and other sounds like this is a done deal and that we are just being informed before it actually happens. If this is the case this is very poor form and not the level of transparency expected for such infrastructure projects.
          • Admin Commented Mary Mendoza 7 months ago
            Hi Nick & Sam,Whilst there is no requirement to directly notify adjoining owners or occupiers of land, we are consulting with the community and other stakeholders prior to submitting a development application. You can find more information on the Crown Development assessment process at https://dac.sa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/114721/Information_Sheet_Crown_Development_Applications_Section_49_and_49A_of_the_Development_Act_1993_10_May_2018.pdf and the State Planning Commission’s website https://www.saplanningcommission.sa.gov.au/.Installing the solar panels on our site ‘behind the meter’ ensures that we can use all the generated energy where it is needed; at the water treatment plant, making us self-sufficient for energy on site. ‘Behind the meter’ means installing the solar panels behind the connection to the electricity provider, in this instance, SA Power Networks. Connecting at this point means we can use all the energy we generate from the panels before any excess is exported to the grid. Installing the solar panels in front of the meter (at another location not on our site) would require SA Water to enter into a private agreement with a renewable power supplier to supply direct electricity via the grid. This would add costs through additional infrastructure, land acquisition and other requirements. On behalf of Alyssa@sawater
            • Nick & Sam 7 months ago
              Alyssa - Thank you for your response - again you still have not answered the question. It doesnt matter about in front of the meter or behid the meter. It is a simple comparison of what is the NPV of this project? What other otptions were considerd both operated or through another power supplier and what was there NPV? As a local resident, SAWater customer and taxpayer I would like to ensure that the money is being invested on the most ecomomic option and not some flight of fancy, catchy marketing "Zero Cost Energy" tag line. There is a cost to all energy options and as an SA Government business you should be choosing the most cost effective option. Please try again with your response.
  • WatersMK 8 months ago
    You have so much opportunity to build the solar panels in so many areas that would not affect the landscape. I think you have forgotten that the trees were placed there to protect the water from the pollution emissions of the cars. So you are willing to compromise the integrity of the water that seems to be to the only drinkable, less contaminated Adelaide drinking water. I find this lacking in logistical foresight - I agree on the solar panels but for heavens sake be practical and open your eyes. looking at a map and saying yep is not the answer or the correct solution. Even a wind turbine amongst the gum trees on the flagstaff road where there is no housing would solve some of your problems and be less of an eyesore and does not shut won at night
  • Participant 001 7 months ago
    I am appalled at this proposal- there is ample area within the reservoir grounds that could be used for this purpose without placing it on the proposed site. This is easily seen on aerial imagery using Location SA or Google Maps. SA Water has already shown it has negligible concern for the visual environment when one considers the unsightly tank installation (related to desalination feed) placed alongside South Road. How can we possibly trust SA Water to do a visually satisfactory installation when the site chosen forces the maximum disruption to the visual environment. The SA Water "spin" suggests that the site has been chosen to preserve native vegetation - it is probable that there are stronger unstated reasons otherwise why would any responsible organisation consciously degrade the visual amenity when there are less intrusive alternatives.
    • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 7 months ago
      Thank you for your comments. All comments, concerns and ideas are recorded as part of the consultation process for this project. Please refer to our previous responses re: panel positioning below. Extensive surveys of the Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve to determine the best area to locate the solar panels have previously been carried out. Engagement with local residents is ongoing and included a public meeting this week. Further engagement will continue online through this forum and a local reference group. Andrew@SAWater
  • Rick 8 months ago
    I also live in the Pines Estate and can’t believe what you are proposing. I was told of the project by my neighbor who was informed by a letter drop around the area, unfortunately I did not receive any of the letter drops. Perhaps a more diligent and astute person should have been chosen to deliver the letters. You also know who we are and where we live as we get an account from you for each quarter, why not address the letters to individuals in the area that would be impacted the most.I strongly disagree with the position proposed for the solar panels, but unfortunately I have been told that the contracts for the provision of the panels was granted last year and SA Forestry has been instructed to remove the trees. So much for a fair forum for us to voice our objection in a constructive and civil manner.I definitely do not agree with the proposed site and I am just waiting for Bunnings to open the store, on South Road, so I can buy some chain, and attach myself to a tree.
    • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 8 months ago
      Thank you Rick. Your comments have been recorded as part of the consultation process. Please refer to our previous responses re: panel positioning below. Extensive surveys of the Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve to determine the best area to locate the solar panels have previously been carried out. Engagement with local residents is ongoing both online through this forum and a local reference group. Andrew@SAWater
      • WatersMK 7 months ago
        Have you seen the abhorrent mound that is along black road now? It is disgusting and an embarrassment. The council did this to coverup this "dumping ground" and has made Flagstaff Hill into a look of now being a low socio economic area. The trees are designed not only to ensure the soil remains stable but to keep the waters as clean as possible and also the amount of seepage into the soil and travel. Removing the trees will encourage the water to travel and you will be putting the Pines Estate under a catastrophe watch as the building of the residential homes would not have been designed for the amount of moisture that will start moving toward our homes.
        • Admin Commented Alyssa 7 months ago
          Hi WatersMK, The Aleppo pines were planted by ForestrySA on our land during 1949 and 1951. The pine trees were always intended to be harvested and are several years overdue for felling.A significant amount of native vegetation buffer will remain between the proposed solar panels and the reservoir, which will support sediment and erosion control. In addition, sediment controls will be constructed to manage potential run off in the vicinity of the solar array, including during periods of extreme rainfall. Alyssa@sawater
  • Frank 8 months ago
    1. I live in the area but I have only just heard about this project second hand. There has been no notification to residents of the area. Not good enough. Would it be so hard to notify residents? Or are you afraid of a backlash?2. I've registered and tried to complete the survey but I'm not allowed to do this unless I'm part of the "panel" whatever that is.So I guess I'm constrained to commenting on this forum, where the responses from SA Water will no doubt all be standard "we have consulted widely / conducted extensive surveys" etc. Maybe SA Water isn't courageous enough to actually conduct a survey of residents where support or otherwise can actually be quantified.So - SA Water is going to cut down a pine forest, destroy the habitat for the wildlife in that area, and destroy the amenity / view along Black Road - and especially for the residents of Flagstaff Pines (I am not, but they have my sympathy/support).So - NO. You do not have my support.
    • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 8 months ago
      Thank you for your feedback. We have carried out extensive surveys of the Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve to determine the best area to locate the solar panels. In selecting the proposed area, we have considered the preservation of native vegetation and the suitability of the areas topography to avoid steep gradients, (which would lead to an inefficient use of land). The land area proposed is relatively flat, and free of native vegetation. A flora and fauna survey was carried out in March 2017 to support in the development of SA Water’s 2017 Land Management Plan for Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve, which includes the ForestrySA Aleppo pine plantation. The ForestrySA pine plantation within the reserve was found to be the least biodiverse area. The Aleppo pines were established as a ForestrySA production forest, on SA Water land, and are several years overdue for harvesting. There is evidence of structural decline with some trees falling over. We understand that visual amenity is important. We are carrying out extensive assessments and working with local community representatives to ensure the solar panel design and landscaping minimises visual impact as much as possible. Landscaping will include an earth mound along Black Road and South Road, planted with native low growing vegetation, to a height that will provide a screen from the solar installation. The area containing the solar panels will be fenced, with the type of fencing taking into consideration feedback we receive from the community and the security requirements of the location. Andrew@SAWater
      • Frank 8 months ago
        In other words, you've chosen the least worst location. Apparently not building a solar farm in a residential area was not an option.
      • Nick & Sam 8 months ago
        Andrew - your reference regarding the Aleppo pine plantation is misleading. Forestry SA may have planted this but this planatation has never been maintained to be harvestable timber. The pines were planted (as they are around the world in reservoir catchments) as they are quick growing and will stabilise the soils and minimise sediment runnoff into the reservoir. If it is intended to remove these pines how does SA Water intend to manage sediment runoff then?
        • Admin Commented Alyssa 7 months ago
          Hi Nick and Sam, Thank you for providing feedback. The Aleppo pines were planted by ForestrySA on our land during1949 and 1951. The pine trees were always intended to be harvested and are several years overdue for felling. An independent ecological assessment of the reservoir reserve found that ForestrySA’s pine plantation is the least biodiverse area in the reserve, with limited or no understorey vegetation and no hollow-forming trees for wildlife nesting.A significant amount of native vegetation buffer will remain between the proposed solar panels and the reservoir, which will support sediment and erosion control. In addition, sediment controls will be constructed to manage potential run off in the vicinity of the solar array, including during periods of extreme rainfall. Alyssa@sawater
      • WatersMK 7 months ago
        Removed by moderator.
  • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 7 months ago
    Hello All. When commenting please take note of the moderation policy for the site which can be found here https://watertalks.sawater.com.au/moderation or linked at the bottom of the page. Moderation is carried out by EngagementHQ in the first place and then by SA Water site administration and can include the removal of posts that use swear words, are defamatory to an individual or the organisation, could be harmful to others or are a repeat of other posts on the page. Kind regards, Andrew@SAWater
  • Ian 8 months ago
    As a resident of Flagstaff Pines and very close to the proposed solar farm I will be attending the 16th of April meeting. The contact person for registration of interest is Alyssa Freeman.@SA Water.com.au The problem I have is that when I contact this address, it asks you to register for Linkedin. I do not wish to join this site and there doesn't seem to be any other way to get in touch with this person. I am not a fan of social media and this site. So is there another way that this person can be contacted?
  • Ian 8 months ago
    I can not believe that in this day and age that you are proposing to remove all of the pine trees adjacent to black road for a solar farm, when all we hear on the news etc is that we need to conserve trees and their habitat. I for one think the whole proposal is bordering on criminal to remove trees that are of more benefit to the environment and the surrounding neighbors than a solar farm that could be built in a less obvious location on land that doesn't need the destruction of trees and their habitat.For example what about using some of masses the vacant land opposite Majors Road.I am interested in hearing the reasons at the 16th of April meeting for using this proposed site, but I am concerned that the decision has already been made.I live in Flagstaff Pines and one house in from Black Road, so this project will effect us the most, please reconsider this proposal for every ones sake that lives in this area.
  • w23000 8 months ago
    My families and I disagree with the solar panel plan. All residents living at Flagstaff Pines love the forests. Removing forests maybe only take 1 week but it would take decades to have such a forest! On the other hand, this plan will devalue the properties of flagstaff pine. Compensation must be considered to each family of flagstaff pines if you stick to push the plan. Government should send person to each family rather than drop a paper.
    • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 8 months ago
      Thank you for your comments, they have been recorded as part of the consultation process. We are carrying out extensive assessments and working with local community representatives to ensure the solar panel design and landscaping minimises visual impact as much as possible. Landscaping will include an earth mound along Black Road and South Road, planted with native low growing vegetation, to a height that will provide a screen from the solar installation. The area containing the solar panels will be fenced, with the type of fencing taking into consideration feedback we receive from the community and the security requirements of the location. Andrew@SAWater
  • WatersMK 8 months ago
    Andrew Coulson, Interesting that you overlooked two comments - both that had other ideas / solutions ……
  • malcolm 8 months ago
    I believe that the solar pane installation for the happy valley reservoir is an excellent initiative. However I do have some concerns. The main concern being about the native animals that currently inhabit this area. What will happen to the Kangaroo population, what will happen to the large Black cockatoos that rely on the pine nuts and what about the survival of other native species that live in this area.
  • RussellM 8 months ago
    I can't believe everyone who thought the pines would stay forever. It is and always has been a plantation destined for harvest, not conservation. The Pines estate is misnamed. The developer didn't plant and pine trees but cashed in an what they knew would not last. At least the solar panels will be behind a planted embankment and not visible from the street. And I hope there will also be ground cover planed under them to help keep the area cool. Overall I don't think the plan is all bad.
  • notagoodidea 8 months ago
    I feel as if this is the quick & cheap option for SA WATER which will have no impact on our bills being cheaper. I find the choice of location as very poor choice as removing a Forest is Disgusting. Maybe using the water to create electricity. Or a floating solar system sounds better and has other benefits. https://news.energysage.com/floating-solar-what-you-need-to-know/
  • Ian 8 months ago
    I have been reading all of the discussion forum comments. As I have already posted my comments I will only add, that all of the feedback re the SA Water proposal has been of a very concerning nature as to the visual, environmental, and properly values (especially Flagstaff Pines residents) etc.I feel that with all of the concerns and stress that the residents are feeling, SA Water should seriously consider scraping this venture.See you all at the meeting on the 16th April.
  • krikat 8 months ago
    I have lived in Flagstaff Hill for over 30 years and these trees have been such an integral part of the landscape. I'm not sure why the site across the road hasn't been proposed. The area on the other side of South Rd is an eyesore, brown dirt and weeds. It is flat and meets the criteria that SA Water has stated in their proposals. I'm sure the underground mains is not going to add too much to the budget. When the Nature Reserve opens in that area SA Water could charge $5 head to visit the site and see what a state of the art Solar Installation looks like. I agree with the move towards Solar and believe that we should all be looking at harnessing the suns power, South Australia especially. SA Water are spending a significant amount on this upgrade and I believe if done correctly it will not impact the area as much as people think. The pine plantation as stated is overdue for removal so will need to be harvested anyway, at least this way SA Water will be mounding and planting to keep some sort of natural vista rather than a logged bare patch.I wonder if the new estate will get a name change? Maybe something like Flagstaff Panels?I also wonder if due to the reduction in SA Waters costs over the long term if we will receive any reductions in our supply charges? (Tongue in cheek, as if)
  • Seeviews 8 months ago
    I am a resident of Aberfoyle Park and until the other day knew nothing about this.Wonder if any consideration has been given to screening or angling the panels so that those that overlook the reserve are not faced with an aspect of an array of solar panels instead of trees. Our current view from our home is over the entire reserve and from elevated home sites this will have a big impact on the view. Also until today residents of Aberfoyle Park had not been able to join the forum, it was promoted as only for residents of Flagstaff Hill and Happy Valley.
    • Admin Commented Andrew Coulson 8 months ago
      Thanks for your comment Seeviews. It has been recorded as part of the consultation process. We apologise for Aberfoyle Park residents not being able to join the forum until recently, this was down to an issue with identifying suburbs in the system not the postcode. Those residents of Aberfoyle Park and O'Halloran Hill already registered on Water Talks have been informed they are now eligible to contribute to this online forum. Andrew@SAWater
  • julie Dodd 8 months ago
    I live in flagstaff pines and i disagree with the proposal to install solar panels so close to the residential area. This will be a terrible look to the area.
  • Dave69 10 months ago
    The Happy Valley Reservoir has a large amount of open space. Why would you build a solar array where local residents are significantly impacted? There are many other areas with the boundary where you could build the array with a lot less visual impact. Flagstaff Pines will need to renamed to Flagstaff Solar. Please re-think the location.
    • Admin Commented Alyssa 10 months ago
      Thanks for your comment. We have carried out extensive surveys of the area to determine the best option for the location of the solar panels. In selecting the proposed area area, we have considered the preservation of native vegetation and the suitability of the areas topography to avoid steep gradients. The land area proposed is relatively flat, and free of native vegetation. A flora and fauna survey was carried out in March 2017 to support in the development of SA Water’s 2017 Land Management Plan for Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve, which includes the ForestrySA Aleppo pine plantation. The ForestrySA pine plantation within the reserve was found to be the least biodiverse area of the reservoir reserve. The plantations contain limited or no understorey vegetation and no hollow forming trees for nesting. Your comment has been recorded as part of the consultation process with residents of Happy Valley and Flagstaff Hill and will be used in future planning. Alyssa@SAWater
    • 5shadesofgrey 10 months ago
      I agree with you dave69. I Fully support the concept of solar energy but vehemently disagree with spoiling the environmental appeal of the new national Park concept by lining Blacks road with the very ugly solar panels. Looking at where they have been installed on other sawater premises, they don't appear to be visible to people living in the community environs. The proposal to "float" the panels is interesting and other options need to be explored so the panels can be constructed without destroying the appeal and beauty of the Pine Forrest.
      • Admin Commented Alyssa 10 months ago
        Thanks for your comment. It has been recorded as part of the consultation process. Alyssa@SAWater
        • Michael 10 months ago
          I vehemently oppose SA Water’s proposal to construct a massive solar panel farm along Black Road, opposite the Pines Residential Estate for reasons which include the following: The proposed development:1. Will significantly reduce the values of properties in the Pines Estate.2. Will impact detrimentally on the aesthetics of the area and on the environment.3. Will have the practical consequence of removing/destroying all the fauna and flora currently on the site.4. Will adversely affect the birdlife in the area. Solar panel farms are reported to kill and maim birds. 5. Will result in localized heating in the area where the panels will be located. From information obtained from a consultant, the removal of the pine plantation and the installation of the panels will have an impact similar to the entire area being covered by concrete. That could raise the local temperature by as much as 5 degrees centigrade. The loss of the pine plantations would mean the loss of the cooling effect that these trees contribute by way of shade and transpiration. 6. Is inconsistent with the policy of the South Australian Government to create a National Park in the area which encompasses the Happy Valley Water Reservoir on which the Pine Plantations are located. 7. Is potentially harmful to the environment. Solar panels contain toxic chemicals. If the solar panels are damaged by severe weather events, fire or mechanical damage the toxic chemicals could potentially leach into the environment. Current benefits of the pine plantations include, but are not limited to, the following: 1. The trees provide screening protection from strong wind, rain and dust to:1.1. Users of Black Road (pedestrians, cyclists and motorists; and1.2. Residents of the Pines Estate.2. The trees improve air quality by removing air pollutants and by absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere which is to the benefit of the communities in Flagstaff Hill, Aberfoyle Park and O’Halloran Hill and in particular, to the residents of the Pines Estate on Black Road. Daily traffic volumes along Flagstaff Road and Main South Road (in the vicinity of the Pine Plantations) are significant being in the region of 25,000 and 33,000 respectively.3. The trees reduce traffic noise.4. The trees lower surface and air temperature by providing shade and by way of evapotranspiration from the trees.5. The trees attract and provide a refuge and food source for fauna. It is common knowledge that the Pine Plantations are regularly frequented by a multitude of bird species, in particular the Sulphur crested cockatoos and the vulnerable black cockatoos. The birds and animals in this region contribute immeasurably to the unique “country feel” of the area.6. The trees enhance the beauty of the landscape of the Flagstaff Hill / O’Halloran Hill area.SA Water ought to reconsider the proposed development.According to a consultant, a floating raft/panel system would be far more beneficial. In addition to clean electricity generation, floating solar can reduce evaporation. SA Water had previously proposed constructing a floating solar plant at the Happy Valley Water Reservoir. Construction of the floating solar plant was to commence in the first half of 2018. So why has SA Water not proceeded with this instead of this ill–conceived project?
  • monty 8 months ago
    I personally have no problem with the installation of a large solar farm but this should not be next to a residential neighborhood! Not only the visual detriment to the area but as stated before, the impact on flora and fauna must also be considered.Is it possible to keep an existing or new planting of medium to large trees around the farm to hide the solar farm for view? Low lying plantings is a waste of time.
  • Terry Harmer 9 months ago
    I disagree the plantation edge has no value because of no biodiversity. Yellow tail black cockatoos feed of these plantations but above all they do provide a pleasing visual green belt, depending on your point of view no doubt! Thinning the northern edge will "open up" the plantation further in making it unstable and cause windfall and an ugly mess. The low crown/branches of the existing edge provides stability!These plantations despite no thinning (not viable) have survived for many years and will continue to do so being very drought tolerant.Surely there are plantations else where with suitable topograhy that can be used. Forestry SA I am sure would not be bother to loose any commercial areas given their general lack of silviculture/harvesting within Happy Valley ResevoirDoes this impact anyway on the proposal as promised last state election to open these areas up for recreation?Will there be a security fence around the solar farm as there is at the substation?Terry Flagstaff Hill
    • Admin Commented Alyssa 9 months ago
      HI Terry, Thank you for providing your feedback. A cross-government taskforce has been assembled to lead the investigation into the opening of all South Australian reservoirs and appropriate recreational use. SA Water is leading the communications and engagement element of the project and will make contact with residents living in close proximity to reservoir reserves in the coming months to help inform the development of opening plans.You can provide feedback on the opening of reservoirs through the SA Water website via the R & R at Reservoir Reserves Water Talks page. The panels will be fenced for a number of reasons including security and public safety. The fence type will vary depending on the feedback we receive from the community and the security requirements of the location. I encourage you to keep in contact with the project team as there will be more opportunities available to discuss the proposal. Alyssa@SAWater
  • Lisette 10 months ago