As part of their extensive public consultation programme, Infinergy adopted Consense's innovative Open Debate online consultation system, which helped to identify valuable support.
Consense is the market leader for online community consultation for renewable energy schemes in the UK and is currently running over 70 consultations for projects including onshore and offshore wind farms, and biomass plants.
The New Albion Wind Farm online consultation (www.newalbionwindfarm.co.uk) launched in June 2008, outlining plans for the eight turbine scheme and inviting comment from local residents. The Open Debate system has enabled Infinergy to mobilise support, with 71% of online users who completed the questionnaire, registering their support for the plans.
Marlies Koutstaal, Communications Manager at Infinergy, said: "We take consultation very seriously and by using online consultation alongside our face-to-face activities it has meant we can reach more people and encourage wider involvement in our proposal. Furthermore, the Open Debate system has been invaluable in helping us reach local supporters of renewable energy".
Infinergy also used Open Debate to keep local people informed of news and events, respond to questions and comments throughout the planning process and to build a valuable database of interested parties.
With planning consent secured, Infinergy hope to start construction of New Albion Wind Farm in 2012.
Consense (www.consense.co.uk) has developed eight further online consultations for Infinergy and their other clients include ScottishPower Renewables, Sky and Mainstream Renewable Power. Consense has also recently launched into the American wind energy market, developing an online consultation for a proposal scheme in Illinois.