Huon River woodchip barge transport plan rejected

A planning change that would have allowed barges on Tasmania's Huon River to export woodchips has been voted down by the local council.

Private company Telopea wanted to export up to 500,000 tonnes of woodchips each year from a jetty at Waterloo Bay near Geeveston.

From there, woodchips would be towed further south and transferred to a ship.

In front of a packed town hall on Wednesday night, Huon Valley Council delivered a split four-all vote on a change to the pl*anning scheme to allow barge loading* , meaning the motion was lost.

Chris Denevish, who owns a house next to the proposed site at Waterloo Bay, said he was amazed when the decision was announced.

"I couldn't quite believe what had happened because...after reading what the planning officer had recommended, I think everybody was just assuming that it would get past," he said.

"There was lots of cheers and lots of claps so it's a fantastic result for the Huon, I think it's a fantastic result for the council.

"It shows now that the community can actually have a say in what goes on in the valley, that local government does listen to the community."

Proponent Dennis Bewsher, who has a background in transport and logistics, can appeal the decision and in a statement said he was considering his options.

The council's decision and 200 submissions also have to be reviewed by the Planning Commission.

But Mayor Peter Coad told 936 ABC Hobart he did not believe the decision would be overruled.

"The Planning Commission doesn't necessarily have to abide by the council decision," he said.

"I would have thought they'd have taken community sentiment and the council decision in mind and I'm sure they will."

Councillor Coad said the proposal had several issues, including the lack of a business plan.

He said there were already alternatives for woodchip exports.

"Yes, it creates another port but my view is that we have other ports, we don't want to be fragmenting our other port facilities around the state," he said.

"I think that it is for the State Government and Federal Government and local government to work together on solutions."