Thousands of Western Power suburban electricity transformers can now breach noise regulations as it would cost $270 million to fix the problem and this has been found unjustifiable.
The Environmental Protection Authority found that up to 4000 of the utility's pad-mounted and overhead transformers were too noisy but had hardly any effect on the community.
The transformers are a common sight across Perth and towns in the south-west grid, emitting a low humming sound and often close to households.
The noisiest transformers are the oldest ones according to the EPA. They claimed that apart from 'isolated cases', the noise did not not materially affect people's lives.
According to Western Power estimates, there are over 10,000 electrical distribution transformers spread over the metropolitan suburbs and up to 4000 of these units may be non-compliant with the prescribed noise standard.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob, the EPA said "It is estimated by Western Power that achieving full compliance for these transformers would cost the Government up to $270 million, which is considered neither a sustainable nor justifiable investment."
Source: The West Australian