Scotland is estimated to have around a quarter of Europe's potential offshore wind resources, and The Scottish Government wishes to see communities across the country share in the benefits from this rich natural resource.
The Scottish Government's National Marine Plan (NMP) Renewables Policy 10 states that "Good Practice guidance for community benefit from offshore wind and marine renewable energy development should be followed by developers, where appropriate". This document looks at good practice in shaping and delivering community benefits from offshore renewable energy projects, complementary to environmental, supply chain and other socio-economic benefits to Scotland.
When providing community benefits from offshore renewables, there are a number of factors to be considered such as identifying the community, working with a diverse set of stakeholders, considering onshore infrastructure and the critical stage of development in which the industry finds itself. These community benefit principles are intended to reflect and accommodate the sensitive and early-stage nature of the industry. As with the Scottish Government's Onshore Good Practice Principles for both Community Benefit and Shared Ownership, it is anticipated that this document will be refined and reviewed in the coming years.
While the majority of this document is intended to be for developers of wind projects, it is proposed that this document will be reviewed over the coming years to incorporate guidance and good practice for other offshore technologies.
This document is split into definitions, context, good practice expectations and supplementary guidance for all involved. The intended readers of this document are developers, communities, local authorities and other stakeholders.
The Scottish Government is committed to supporting the development of a successful and internationally respected offshore renewable energy industry, and application of the good practice principles in this document is therefore encouraged by the Scottish Government.
Email: Lorne Frew