Energex not deterred by recent floods

Paul Casbolt and Peter Jenkyn on his property at Logan Reserve where new power lines have been proposed. Photo: Inga Williams / The Reporter
Paul Casbolt and Peter Jenkyn on his property at Logan Reserve where new power lines have been proposed. Photo: Inga Williams / The Reporter Inga Williams

THE recent flooding of the Logan River has done nothing to deter Energex on its plans to place 27 power poles in the river as part of the proposed Loganlea to Jimboomba powerline.

The company believes the power poles, which would be placed in the river, would be able to withstand flooding should it occur again.

"Recent flooding in the Logan River, including water depth and velocity, were consistent with flood plain management and mapping prepared for Energex in the initial route planning stages of the powerline proposal," a spokesperson for Energex said.

"Energex will continue to monitor flooding impacts in the area and any additional information will be considered as part of the detailed design stage to ensure the delivery of a safe and reliable power supply to the region.

"Despite the extreme weather conditions associated with the ex-tropical cyclone Oswald, no debris or weather related power outages occurred on Energex's transmission network, including powerlines similar to that being planned in the southern Logan-northern Scenic Rim area."

Minister for Energy Mark McArdle said since last month's floods, he had requested more information on the damage to local areas where the poles would be placed.

"I am very aware of the recent flooding in Logan and have asked for preliminary information on its impact on the Logan River and the surrounding areas," he said.

"It should also be noted the selection of the route for the powerline took into account flood modelling including input from local sources and Logan City Council."

However, president of the Veto Energex Towers Organisation (VETO) Paul Casbolt said the recent wild weather and the flooding of the river was proof of what he had been trying to tell Energex for the past four years.

Mr Casbolt said he and hundreds more have been opposing the powerline.

As an alternative, the group has pushed for a substation to be built at Greenbank rather than powerlines be erected through properties and across the Logan River.

During a radio broadcast on the Wednesday of the floods, Mr Casbolt said he heard an Energex spokesman say he could not get people into the Logan area to restore power.

"That to me was classic because that is exactly what we have been saying for the past four years.

"We know they won't be able to get near the river on a flood plain to restore power."

One of the proposed powerlines is outlined to be built on Peter Jenkyn's property at Logan Reserve, which is located next to the Logan River.

He said his property has flooded four times.

Mr Jenkyn said his property was likely to become inundated again in the future and when it did, there would be no way for Energex crews be able to access the pole.

"I have lived here for about 15 years and have had water views about four times, but this time it was the biggest flood to come up onto my property," he said.

"My property here is seven acres and almost half of that went under water.

"Energex have said they can build a pole to withstand the elements, but what about the erosion around the pole and the texture of the ground after that much rain and water.

"Here on my property, they would not be able to get anywhere near the pole for days because of all the water coming up from the river."

Mr Jenkyn said that power poles, along with three others in the same area, would be placed in the highest current flow area in the river.

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