Wind turbine project in Flachgau: Salzburg AG hesitates
Wind power on the 1,027 meter high Lehmberg between Henndorf and Thalgau (Flachgau) has been discussed and discussed for 24 years. The project has now progressed so far that the landowner Max Mayr-Melnhof and the partner Wien Energie have already signed.
“Apparently still not really wanted”
Everything seemed clear, only one signature is missing – from the new Salzburg AG CEO Michael Baminger: “There is a lot of talk and little done, that’s really my opinion,” says landowner Max Mayr-Melnhof. “I think we were pioneers in many things – be it wood chip plants or photovoltaic systems – and we also anticipated this wind farm many years ago, but apparently people still don’t really want it.”
Twelve to 14 wind turbines are planned on the Lehmberg, says Mayr-Melnhof: “The system there would have about the same output as three to four large hydroelectric power plants on the Salzach. That’s something.”
Greens see “people on the brakes – also in ÖVP”
The Greens now suspect that the ÖVP wants to postpone this until after the state elections in order to avoid a stir in the affected places: “There are still people on the brakes – also in the ÖVP,” says the Green Deputy Governor Martina Berthold. “And I can’t understand that.” Mayr-Melnhof, on the other hand, will make “no comment” on the political background in view of the upcoming state elections.
ÖVP state party leader and state governor Wilfried Haslauer said on Monday that the delays in the wind turbine on the Lehmberg had nothing to do with the state elections. Haslauer is also Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Salzburg AG. The state energy supplier said in writing: “The extensive and detailed investigations into the Lehmberg site are still in progress and will take some time. It is important to get an overall picture of the location”.
Wind turbines on the Lehmberg: Salzburg AG hesitates
It is interesting, however, that Salzburg AG board member Brigitte Bach is said to have already signed the contracts, and that Michael Baminger, the new chairman of the board of the state energy supplier, only declared on January 12 in “Salzburg today”: “In our industry – when it comes to the energy transition – the direction is very clear. We mustn’t lose any time when investing either.” Now, however, it is precisely Michael Baminger’s signature that is still missing for the wind turbine on the Lehmberg.
Landowners: “Many” other interested parties
In any case, after almost a quarter of a century of negotiations, the landowner, Mayr-Melnhof, is slowly bursting at the seams: “Of course, I’m also entitled to cancel a contract if the other side doesn’t sign for months. And we are also considering doing that.” Because in addition to Salzburg AG, there are “many” other interested parties, “including foreign ones,” emphasizes Mayr-Melnhof: “We only played a lot on Salzburg as patriots, with Wien Energie together. That was extremely fair. But if one party doesn’t want to, then you can look for a new one.”
Around 50,000 households in Salzburg could be supplied with wind power from the Lehmberg.