Consenting and Environmental
In order to go ahead, wind energy projects must ensure they take steps to understand, and if necessary mitigate any impact on the environment, people living nearby or other activity in the area. This can include nearby residents and wildlife for onshore works and structures and, in the case of offshore wind farms, aviation and fishing industries, as well as marine wildlife.
Planning permission or consent is the approval needed before construction, expansion, operation or sometimes demolition (decommissioning) can begin. Planning consents ensure that proposed projects are fully assessed in terms of their potential environmental impact and their impact on local communities, other industries and other relevant stakeholders. This ensures that the projects are appropriate in terms of their location, size and the components comprising the development.
What can a career look like?
There are a whole range of organisations to work for - from those developing the wind farms themselves, to third party consultancies, to the advisory and regulatory bodies that assess consent applications and hold them to account.
Those working in consenting related roles can be based in a variety of locations depending on the type of role they have. For example, those working in the planning application team as Consent Managers will be based in offices, and sometimes have the option work remotely. Environmental surveyors will work in the field as well as doing some desk-based work.
There are a whole range of possible career paths in consenting; the list below and case studies provide a flavour of possible careers in this area...
Environmental Consents Officer
Planning and Consent Lead
Director of Development
Head of Development &
Offshore Consenting Manager
Offshore Renewables Specialist
Learn more about consenting
To learn about consenting in more depth and the role it plays in the development of offshore wind, browse the following e-learning modules, developed by the Offshore Wind Industry Council: