The official website for the AusNet project planning to erect 190km of high voltage overhead transmission lines through some of Victoria’s most picturesque countryside.


Plans which have the potential to adversely impact the lives of thousands and degrade the amenity of the countryside for all Australians, need to be challenged.

How has the ‘process’ failed and why is this proposal simply wrong ?


This is a technical, environmental, commercial, health, safety and legal discussion. Let’s try to separate the facts from the fiction.   

For readers who are not familiar with the areas targeted to be impacted, here’s some photos for your consideration.

AusNet Services (previously SP AusNet) is an Australian energy company, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) and the Singapore Exchange (SGX).

AusNet Services is currently 31.1%  owned by  Singapore Power19.9% by  State Grid Corporation of China and 49% is publicly owned .

Singapore Power is  wholly owned by the Singapore government.

State Grid is the  state-owned electric utility monopoly of China and the largest utility company in the world.

AusNet might be listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, however it would be interesting to know how much of the 49% public shareholding is actually owned by Australian investors, if any.

There is no doubt that this project will benefit Victoria by providing increased capacity for the Melbourne electricity grid, however, how much of the operational profit from this project is actually going to benefit Australians, and at what cost?

Some Considerations To Take Into Account

AusNet is a private company wishing to make money by installing, maintaining and operating an overhead high voltage transmission line , potentially not only at the expense of landholders over which the transmission lines will tower, but also at the expense all Australian’s, who’s views of 190km of the picturesque western Victorian rural landscape will be destroyed for generations to come


Let’s examine what alternatives are available to AusNET

Who will benefit?

There will be winners and losers from this proposal. This is a view of who may benefit and who will be adversely impacted 

Risks to be considered

What are some of the potential risks associated with the plan and can they be adequately mitigated?

what remedies are available?

What potential remedies are available to be pursued by those affected?

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” ― Edmund Burke 
(Attributed from a letter addressed to Thomas Mercer)

The only way to make a change is to get involved. If you don’t want massive 85m High Voltage Transmission Lines destroying the amenity of western Victoria, then get involved and make your voice heard.

investigate legal options

Just because it may not have been done before, doesn’t mean it can’t be done now. Compensation is only available to Easement Owners, not neighbours or others impacted. Consider a Class Action as an option to pursue remedies.

Enlist the support of your local, State and Federal representatives. Don’t accept mediocre responses or excuses.

If they are genuine community representatives, then they will be keen to help.

know your rights

As the Legal fraternity will advise, don’t fall victim to commercial bluff tactics. Know what legal options are available to you and if, or when, it is not in your legal interest to respond to requests from AusNet’s project team. 

What Victorians Have To Look Forward To

As more and more wind farms are commissioned, they will need to connect to new and existing substations in order to connect to the grid. Do Australians really want to see high voltage towers being erected all over the Victorian countryside?

Wind generators can’t operate underground, but power transmission lines can.  For every new cluster of wind turbines, there will potentially be thousands of new high voltage towers needed to service them.

Progressive countries are realising that a sky full of electricity transmission towers is not the answer and that the time to start commissioning underground power transmission systems has arrived. The increased once-off commissioning cost is offset over time by the reduced maintenance and support costs, along with the elimination intangible risks, such as liability for bushfires and their consequences.  

Australia consistently purports to be a world leader in innovation, so let’s showcase that here and install these high voltage transmission lines underground.

Historical Precedents

How much effect does public consultation really have in determining whether projects like this one, modify their practices to take into account affected stakeholder’s concerns? 

Is the consultation phase simply a legal ‘tick-in-the-box’ exercise, necessary in order to obtain approvals to apply for easements on targeted properties?

Let’s look at some historical examples to determine whether public feedback had any effect on the outcome.

The regulator’s focus is historically on cost

The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) rejects underground options due to cost

power companies prioritise on saving cost

Power companies are open to alternate solutions, however, cost and profits are primary drivers

Historically, unlike in progressive countries, Australian policy and legislation is not supportive of efforts that prioritise preserving nature over short term goals and budgets.

compensation is limited and generally unfair

Compensation historically has only been available to landowners whose land is subject to easements. Neighbours and other parties affected by property devaluation and the destruction of amenity have been ineligible for compensation.

Who Can Help?

The following representatives need to hear your concerns. Don’t leave it for someone else, or nothing will happen. Everyone’s voice needs to be heard for the best outcome to be achieved, otherwise this project will ‘steam-roll’ ahead, with or without your involvement.

AusNet have reached out for community consultation and NOW is your ONLY opportunity to have any say. One person won’t make any difference, but an entire community may. 

Member for Wannon

Member for Ballarat

Member for Gorton

MLC for Western Victoria

  • Mr Stuart Grimley
  • Tenancy One, 15 Pearl Street, Torquay, VIC 3228
  • (03) 5218 5001

East Moorabool (Mayor)

Shadow Minister for Economic Development


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Latest news from our blog

This site aims to provide a central hub for information to the public about the proposed Western Victoria Transmission Network Project (WVTNP), which is in the process of seeking approval to commission a network of extra high voltage overhead electricity transmission towers, between Ararat and Sydenham in Victoria, Australia.

The WVTNP is only one part of a series of State and National projects, whose aim is to provide interconnectivity for regional renewable energy hubs in order to transport the electricity generated by them to the Statewide grid.

The public have recently been advised that the project is now in the consultation phase and landowners whose land is in scope for potential easement applications have been approached by AusNet, advising them of the fact that their land is in the path of the proposed transmission line. 

Nathan Lidgett wrote a letter to the Minister for Planning, the Hon. Richard Wynne, articulating his concerns regarding the impacts that the proposed overhead 500kV transmission lines would have on Bushfire Prevention and Community Safety. 5th July 2020A Matter of Public Interest and Human SafetyDear Minister for Planning,I am writing to express my…Posted by Nathan Lidgett on Monday, July 6, 2020 […]
Win News today reported on the proposed project and the risk of endangering nearby communities. Transmission Network Line projectFarmers in Myrniong are concered Ausnet's propsed Western Victorian Transmission Network Line will only create fuel to sperk fires in nearby state forests.They're now pleading with the company to consider alternatives.Posted by WIN News Ballarat on Thursday, July 2, 2020 […]
Former Bacchus Marsh detective and Justice Party MLC Stuart Grimley spoke with many concerned constituents last week about the Western Victoria Transmission Line Project and wanted to make sure there was a good outcome for both sides during a 2-years community consultation phase. He mentioned that “This (Western Victoria Transmission Line Project) needs to happen, but productive energy shouldn’t come at […]
This commentary from a concerned member of the Moorabool public needs answers: Communities in the country are going to have to carry the burden of this ill conceived project for generations to come. Their properties will be devalued , their insurance premiums will go up, they will be at increased risk of bushfire, there are potential risks to their health […]
AusNet say that “No route has been decided” however it’s clear that they have a preferred route in mind.  The shortest and most direct route would be the cheapest, and coincidently, AusNet have sent letters to a number of property owners advising them that their properties are in scope for towers to be erected upon them – and even more […]
Green Energy should be transported in a green way, Moorabool Mayor David Edwards said according to the report in Moorabool News.   The article can be found at, or a download of a copy of the article is available at the following link:   Moorabool News Article – Best Outcome Must Be For All
Moorabool News Articles downloaded from Scribd The following related articles have been downloaded from Scribd.       Download the file here (4Mb in size)  Moorabool News    
The Moorabool News published a story on the 23th of June 2020 with an interview of the Maher family, whose property has been targeted as one that will be in the path of the proposed high voltage transmission towers. Kevin, his brother Peter and cousin Basil and Andrew voiced their concerns at a community meeting in Myrniong, against the above […]
Moorabool News broke a story on the 16th of June 2020 advising that Multi-national company AusNet Services and the Andrews State Government are planning to run 200kV and 500kV high voltage transmission lines between Ararat and Sydenham in Victoria as part of a integration of regional renewal energy hubs planned for Western Victoria. Residents were shocked to find that the […]