Fauch Hill Wind Farm – Community Benefit update

Fauch Hill Sustainable Energy – Proposed Community Benefits Package

Changes have been made to the proposed community benefit for the Fauch Hill Wind Farm.  It should be noted Community Council representations to the Scottish Government and to West Lothian Council are based on the results of the Kirknewton Community Consultation conducted in January 2012 by IBP Strategy and Research. 

These revised benefits are based on continued dialogue with the Kirknewton Development Trust and now meet a number of our suggestions.  These include an increase from £4000 to £5000 per installed MW capacity of the windfarm, an increase in the local infrastructure fund from £276,000 to £330,000 (although short of the local residents suggested figure) and the opportunity for the Development Trust to invest in this renewable energy project.

Fauch Hill Sustainable Energy proposes the following Community Benefit Package for the wind farm in West Lothian:

a) A Community Benefit of £5,000 per MW installed  for 22 turbines of 3MW capacity. This represents an annual payment of  £330,000, to be paid for the 25 year operating life of the wind farm, equivalent to £8.25million in total. This benefit will be split between the host community councils, Kirknewton and West Calder and Harburn, and the wider communities for project s such as skills training opportunities and the Pentland Hills Regional Park. The first payment will be made in the year that approval of the wind farm permit is received, and the benefits will be divided as follows:

  1. Kirknewton Community Council – 30%
  2. West Calder and Harburn Community Council – 30%
  3. West Lothian Development Trust – 40%

b) Local infrastructure fund equivalent to one year’s community benefit i.e. £330,000 to be paid to those residences closest to the site, for energy efficiency projects.

c) The ability for the Development Trusts of local communities to invest in a community turbine giving them the opportunity to share in the ownership and success of the project. The investment by the Development Trusts will be offered on the following basis:

  1. Kirknewton Development Trust – 30%
  2. West Calder and Harburn Development Trust – 30%
  3. West Lothian Development Trust – 40%

The financing for each Development Trust’s interest in the community turbine may come from a number of sources, such as current funds held by the development trusts, matched funds received from lotteries such as the Big Lottery, the future community benefits to be paid under the scheme in (a) above, or future cash flow from the community turbine itself, or from private or public sector financing.

% Share of   Total Community Benefit Fund Community   Benefit Fund payable £ per year Total   Community Benefit Fund paid over 25 years % Share in   Community Turbine
Kirknewton   Development Trust  30% £99,000 £2.475million 30%
West Calder   and Harburn Community Trust 30% £99,000 £2.475million 30%
West Lothian   Development Trust 40% £132,000 £3.3million 40%
TOTAL 100% £330,000 £8.25million 100%

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