Environmental Projects (Community Benefits)

– in the Scottish Parliament on 26th September 2013.

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Photo of James Dornan James Dornan Scottish National Party

6. To ask the Scottish Government what recent discussions ministers have had with local authorities regarding the community benefits that arise from environmental projects. (S4O-02437)

Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

Our aim is to maximise the opportunities for community benefits from renewable energy developments, and we recognise that national guidance on good practice would be welcome. Guidance is currently being developed under our community and renewable energy scheme—CARES—in consultation with stakeholders. The aim is to publish that in the autumn.

Photo of James Dornan James Dornan Scottish National Party

Does the minister agree that it is imperative that local authorities consider that any community benefits from such projects should support the local community first and foremost? In Castlemilk and Carmunnock, in my constituency, the community has been informed that most of the profit from the local wind park, which was originally to be used for local community benefit, will now be made part of central funding by Glasgow City Council.

Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

We seek to work with all local authorities on these matters. I have not had specific discussions with Glasgow City Council on the issue, so it would probably not be correct for me to make any substantive comment thereon. Generally speaking, we seek to work with local authorities to ensure that communities can benefit from renewable energy developments in their own part of Scotland.