Dorset has been revealed as one of the UK's top spots for renewable electricity generation, with the county's investment in clean energy solutions growing by 250% in the past seven years.
Furthermore, Dorset Council was recognised as having a well-planned scheme for its local authority planning practices, allowing clean energy projects to progress smoothly and without delays.
Councillor David Walsh, the Dorset Council Portfolio Holder for Planning, welcomed the news, saying that the council's planning officers were fully committed to facilitating clean energy generation across Dorset.
He added that planning officers did their best to protect the environment by reducing the risk of negative environmental impacts with planning applications whilst helping installations to go ahead that would grow green energy generation and slash carbon emissions in the longer term.
In 2020 the county produced enough green electricity to supply over 110,000 homes in a year. That figure is expected to grow this year after three new solar farms were approved. They will produce enough clean energy to power nearly 30,000 homes every year.
Construction on the North Fossil Farm solar project, located close to Tadnoll, begins this summer and will generate sufficient clean energy for 14,000 average-size homes. South of Sherborne, the Higher Stockbridge Solar farm will generate sufficient green electricity for nearly 11,000 homes annually.
There are further proposals for a 15MW solar farm and 3MW battery storage facility close to Blandford Hill.
The council notes in its communications that it has a dual role to play in preserving Dorset's beautiful countryside and ecological diversity whilst encouraging the development of vital clean energy developments that will allow it to achieve a low-carbon future. It is seeking to grow its ambitions and to share best practices with other councils.