Posted by: Dr. Breffni Lennon | July 9, 2012

SEAI: Attitudes towards Wind Farms in Ireland

Back in 2011, the SEAI commissioned SQW Ltd and Dr. Geraint Ellis of Queen’s University Belfast to prepare a report (A review of the context for enhancing community acceptance of wind energy in Ireland) that would provide a suite of innovative approaches towards increasing community acceptance of wind energy projects and other related infrastructure in Ireland. The study team conducted the following:

  • A review of international best practice of the issues
  • A review of the academic literature on community acceptability of wind energy projects, with particular emphasis on potentially useful ideas that had not yet been translated into practice
  • A review of current good practice in Ireland, using local examples to compare to areas in Ireland where aspirational models are lacking
As the report acknowledges: “the promotion of community acceptance is not simply a process isolated to developers and regulatory agencies, but will require the engagement of a broad range of stakeholders to reflect on their own policy and practice, including those of host communities. The audience of this report is therefore very diverse and includes:  
  • Policy makers, Government Departments and agencies
  • Elected representatives
  • Local authority officials, planners and consultant planners
  • An Bord Pleanála
  • Wind energy developers and representative groups
  • Electricity network owners and/or operators
  • Community wind energy groups
  • Resident associations
  • Development authorities and associations
  • NGOs
  • Interested parties involved in large infrastructure projects in other sectors”  (SQW, 2012)

Details on this report and the recent consultative forum, Towards best practice in planning and implementing renewable energy projects, can be accessed here.

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