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Reports/Rapports : Exploring community acceptance of rural wind farms in Australia

Source: CSIRO.
CSIRO’s Energy Transformed Flagship has undertaken a preliminary study to consider community acceptance of wind farms from a variety of stakeholder perspectives.

"The Australian Government’s Renewable Energy Target (RET) requires that 20 per cent of Australia’s electricity be produced from renewable energy sources by 2020. Previous projections anticipate that wind technology could contribute to the majority of this target (for example, see ROAM Consulting, 20101).

Given this target and interest in wind farm development, CSIRO has explored community acceptance of the technology.

The preliminary study produced four key findings:

1. There is strong community support for the development of wind farms.

2. Many of the benefits can be shared or communicated in ways that would enhance community support for the development of wind farms in a region.

3. Existing regulatory approaches provide an appropriate framework for negotiating wind farm developments, but there is scope for improving outcomes.

4. The emerging notion of a ‘Social Licence to Operate’ provides a useful framework for wind farm developers to engage local communities in ways that could enhance transparency and local support."

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