“We need more green energy, and our stakeholders have a lot of good ideas,” said Corbett. “I believe Wheeler will help bring together diverse audiences and get them to put forward constructive ideas so we can move forward and reach our target.”

Understanding the role of biomass, he added, will be an important part of the discussion. Government also wants to look closely at expanding small and community-based renewable energy developments.

“It is a privilege for Dalhousie University to be asked to lead such an important consultation process for the province,” said Wheeler, dean of Dalhousie’s faculty of management. “We believe that an objective and transparent process such as we have proposed will allow different interests to be resolved for the benefit of all and, most importantly, for current and future generations of Nova Scotians and the natural environment on which they depend.”

Wheeler and select university staff and consultants will manage scenario building and consultation to help the province maximize the social, environmental and economic benefits of new or expanded sources of renewable energy.

“It is my intention that this process will deliver a clear set of choices for Nova Scotia energy producers and consumers to unite on a cleaner and greener energy future for the province,” said Wheeler.

Wheeler oversaw a similar process last year for demand side management, which helped design a new system of electricity energy conservation in Nova Scotia.

Corbett said the consultation process would begin in a few weeks and was expected to be completed around the end of 2009.