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Good Practice Principles – Community Benefits Onshore Renewables

Scottish Government have shared a set Good Practice Principles to help communities, renewable energy businesses, local authorities and other stakeholders involved in the development of renewable energy and seeking to explore community benefits packages.

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Community benefits schemes are a well-established, integral part of renewable energy developments, and often represent a positive relationship between renewable energy businesses and communities.

In 2014, the Scottish Government, in consultation with the renewables industry and communities, published the Good Practice Principles for Community Benefits from Onshore Renewable Energy Developments. Our aim was to promote transparency in the process by providing a practical guide for stakeholders to use.

The Good Practice Principles have been widely adopted across the renewables industry, providing a benchmark for the sector. It has become an invaluable tool for those communities with little or no experience of engaging with renewable energy businesses developing projects. 

After a review of the guidance and practice Scottish Government have recently published a new document that supersedes the 2015 version. 

Community benefits from projects developed to date are making a real – and in some cases, transformational – difference at a local level. This is demonstrated by the diverse range of projects supported and the value of community benefits payments received by communities in the last 12 months:

  • 214 projects offering community benefits packages
  • £15,719,720 total community benefits paid last 12 months

Example of projects supported include:

  • Community car club
  • Community kitchen class room
  • Community cycle club
  • Befriending programme
  • Refurbishment of community hall
  • Start-up grant for small businesses
  • Bursaries for further education

To read the document in full, visit the Scottish Government Website