Biofuels and Community Participation

November 19, 2012
A man reads to a child on his lap, with other people sitting around in chairs outside
Armando's Tractorless Family Farm

Extension and other natural resource educators can provide educational programming on renewable energy and potential impacts at the community level, and can be facilitators of community discussions about renewable energy. Sharon Lezberg provided training materials to approximately 100 extension, NRCS educators, and community stakeholders on ways to engage community members and stakeholders in assessing proposed bioenergy developments. The toolkit Lezburg developed provides a decision-making tool to guide communities toward developing their own standard of sustainability and criteria for meeting that standard. It’s

available online.

One evaluator noted, “There is strength in a tool that allows developers and communities to objectively assess a renewable energy project...Ultimately, the interaction between developer and community generated by this tool will result in citing renewable energy projects that are profitable for developers, compatible with neighbors, and consistent with local community values.”

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Topics: Bioenergy and Biofuels, Community Development, Energy, Public Participation, Sustainable Communities
Related Locations: North Central, Northeast, South, West