New farmer taskforce gives power to the people

Media Releases » New farmer taskforce gives power to the people

The Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) has announced it will create the new VFF Energy and
Transmission Taskforce to lead its advocacy on renewable energy and transmission infrastructure
development across Victoria and help give farmers a say.

The new Taskforce was today established by the VFF Policy Council and will focus on providing a
united advocacy approach for farming communities that are battling proposed developments.

VFF President Emma Germano said it was important that farmers who are directly impacted by
these developments lead the VFF’s advocacy efforts on the issues affecting their communities.
“Ironically, this taskforce is about giving power to the people to have their say.”

“Farmers need to be the ones at the centre of this. It’s their livelihoods at risk and it’s their
communities that are being torn apart.”

“It’s vital that the VFF’s advocacy is directly connected to the communities that are set to be
impacted. It’s also important that these communities are connected to one another,” Ms Germano

The Taskforce will be led by the VFF’s Planning, Environment and Climate Change Committee
Chair, Gerald Leach who will work alongside VFF Horticulture Vice-President, Katherine Myers, VFF
Water Councillor Kain Richardson and VFF Gippsland Branch President Hamilton Gerrand, with
further members to be appointed over the coming weeks.

“The work done by farmer advocates to date has been incredible. I’m pleased that we will have
people like Gerald, Katherine, Kain and Hamilton sharing their local experience with farmers from
other parts of the state, who are just starting to learn about the significant impact these
developments pose for their own farm businesses,” Ms Germano said.

Ms Germano said the Taskforce’s focus will be on critical issues involving land access and
compensation for farmers, whilst also looking at alternatives to overhead powerlines over farms.
“The Victorian Government’s announcement of $8,000 additional per km of easement was truly a
slap in the face for farmers, when we haven’t even had the discussion about what fair compensation
looks like.”

“We need to solve that issue, whilst also looking to alternatives to build transmission towers over
farms. Using existing easements and undergrounding powerlines must be explored,” Ms Germano