The siting of both onshore and offshore wind farms has caused controversy in a number of countries, particularly in Europe, which currently has the world’s largest array of offshore wind turbines. Like the rest of the world there has been a dramatic increase in wind farm development In Australia over the last two decades but none of this has occurred in the offshore environment. Australian wind farms are predominantly located onshore around the southern part of the continent where wind energy is high. This has specifically affected rural coasts where it has created planning and land use policy issues along with environmental impacts and associated public and political reaction. This paper examines the geographic spread, timing and concentration of Australian wind farms around the coast. It also examines the extent to which scientific knowledge on wind farm impacts is incorporated into different state and federal land use and environmental policy and legislative frameworks. The paper concludes that the rapidity in the expansion of the Australian wind energy sector has outpaced strategic land use planning resulting in a piece-meal and cumulative wind farm development on rural coasts.