I have written before about our Aikan project in US. The unique Aikan Technology® converts discarded organic resources into valuable biogas and fertiliser. The project aims to develop an export model and pave the road for the first plant in US.
This summer we visited the site for the first plant: Project Central Connecticut. Our project partner in US Turning Earth has done an excellent job handling the stakeholders. The site is in an industrial area but has a residential area nearby; the Jensen Community. Generally people has been positive towards the project, because it makes good sense to protect the environment, but there has been some concerns regarding specific issues, e.g. odor from the plant and the future property value in the community. Some of the activities to ensure buy in from the community are:
- An odor control plan to ensure no odor (incapsulating the process modules)
- Establishment of green houses on the border between the plant and the residential area
- Conducting of two public hearings together with Town of Southington (June 3rd and May 28th 2014).
- Several one-on-one meetings with the residents.
- A site walk with the residents.
- Involvement of a grass root firm (who does PR for development projects) in the communication.
The result has been a positive attitude towards the project. There are many learnings about how to handle stakeholders proactively – something Danish companies could benefit from. Hear Founder and EVP Amy Kessler from Turning Earth tell about the stakeholder handling here.