Wind Farm Developer Welcomes Community Feedback

by Melissa Clark

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

02-CommunityLocals in Inchture and Balbeggie welcomed news of a community partnership approach for a proposed wind farm, at a series of public exhibitions held by Banks Renewables.

Over 120 locals attended the exhibitions to find out more about the Bandirran Wind Farm, which were held on Tuesday May 7 at St Martin’s Public Hall, Balbeggie and Wednesday May 8 at Inchture Hotel.

Feedback from the two public exhibitions, held close to the proposed site, show that members of the local community want to take the idea of a community partnership scheme forward within community groups and community councils to see how Bandirran could benefit them.

The proposed community partnership would mean that communities surrounding the development would secure a share of the gross revenues generated from the wind farm which they could then use towards priority community projects and initiatives. Additionally communities would have the option to purchase an increased share of the wind farm post commissioning.

Members of the business community also attended and commented on the opportunities for local firms if the wind farm was given consent.

Greg Campopiano, Assistant Manager at Collace Quarry,said: “I was really impressed by the exhibitions from Banks Renewables as it gave the community a clear and informative view of what they were proposing.

“The community partnership idea sounds great and helped me understand how as a community we could all benefit from a wind farm at Bandirran and definitely reinforced my support for it

“As a local business, it was also reassuring to hear news about the opportunities which could be made available to local companies during the construction of the wind farm and I am really looking forward to hearing more about how Banks Renewables will offer further support to the local economy.”

Colin Anderson, development director at Banks Renewables, said: “It was great to get the feedback we did from local people that attended the exhibitions. We got the chance to show the local community what we can bring to them and how the wind farm could benefit everyone involved.

“As well as the positive feedback on the community partnership proposal we got several useful comments which will help us shape the final proposals. We want to develop a wind farm that suits as many people as possible which has the widest positive impact in terms of community, environment and local economy.

“I believe the community partnership we are proposing for our Bandirran Wind Farm is a unique and exciting opportunity for the area which lets the community take control of their future. It will help create positive projects for the area, create job opportunities and help give the local economy a great boost.”

Banks Renewables is at the early scoping stages for up to eight turbines at Southtown Farm, located on the Bandirran Estate, two miles east of Balbeggie which will generate up to 27.2MW of electricity.

Banks Renewables has extensive experience of working in partnership with local communities across Scotland and the United Kingdom to successfully design and develop new energy schemes and deliver a range of local economic, social and environmental benefits, tailored to their individual community needs.

It is part of the Banks Group (www.banksgroup.co.uk) , a family firm founded in 1976, which now employs 400 people in the renewable energy, property and mining sectors. The company’s development with care approach underpins all community consultation and ensures environmental excellence.

Public relations in Scotland for Banks Renewables is handled by Scottish PR agency Holyrood Partnership.

Melissa Clark

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