Built Environment – Harmonious Manmade Landscapes
Hepburn Community Wind Farm
Hepburn Wind, VIC
Hepburn Wind is a community co-operative who have built Australia’s first community owned wind farm. Almost 1900 people, mostly local to the area, have pooled funds to build a two turbine, 4.1 MW wind farm at Leonards Hill, in Central Victoria.
Hepburn Wind is a stellar example of how a community has catalysed the development of a whole new industry sector — community owned renewable energy. The project has been built by the community to benefit the community and is a standout example of a social enterprise.
With the turbines complete and generating clean, safe electricity, we are excited by the platform we have created. National recognition of our achievements, through the Banksia Awards, will assist us to explain the opportunity of local engagement with renewable energy (not just wind energy) to a wide group of communities, and ensure steady growth for the community energy sector.
Comments from Judges
Judges commended Hepburn Wind on its community engagement to commit to the project and it’s funding. The impressive data on its performance and its value to the local community impressed on Judges its potential for long-term viability. Also the establishment of Embark to provide guidance and lessons learned for other communities to learn from impressed the judges.