We’re working with a lot of very active projects with 8 share offers planned over the next 3 months
Wales is really starting to embrace renewable energy co-ops.
First up is Egni Solar. They have currently raised £64,000 of the £155,000 they need to install solar PV panels on 7 community buildings in South Wales, including a volunteer-run cinema! The share offer closes April 3rd. We worked with them to help develop the project and share offer. Lots more on their website here: http://egni.coop/ including the share offer document.
On the hydro front, following the success of their first hydro share offer last autumn, Llangattock Green Valleys is running a second, bigger share offer this spring. LGV Hydro 1 raised £270,000 to fund two community micro hydro schemes. Now they’re aiming to raise £690,000 to build a further four high-head schemes in the Brecon Beacons National Park. Together these micro hydros should generate some 355 MWh of electricity a year – that’s enough to power 90 Welsh homes and displace 158 tonnes of CO2 annually. To find out more, download their share offer document at http://llangattockgreenvalleys.org/ You can also email them at firstname.lastname@example.org or call them free on 0800 206 1915 to request a copy by post. The offer is currently 30% subscribed and runs until 30th April.
We’re working with a number of other really exciting Welsh projects, including wind power and community biomass heat in the North West, some more hydro and ambitious solar projects…more to come soon.
Moving to Scotland, and the success of our Dingwall Wind Co-op (£856,000 raised, mostly locally, turbine to be built in May) has inspired some new wind projects along similar lines.
The first to come to fruition will be Wester Derry Wind Co-op in Perthshire – also using the same 250 kW WTN turbine and based on the same winning co-op structure. The share offer launch is now set for 7.30 pm on the 7th April 2014 at the Angus Hotel, Blairgowrie – or if you can’t make it along please contact email@example.com or sign up online to the mailing list on the project website at http://westerderrywind.org.uk/ Shares are available to all and we will as usual be prioritising local people – although the first £150,000 of shares are offered under SEIS on a first-come first-served basis to enable us to get turbine deposits in asap – so please get in quick if you wish to join us.
If you support locally owned wind in Scotland then please check out our other leading Scottish wind co-op, Kemps Hill Wind Co-op http://kempshillwind.org.uk/ and follow the links to support the currently live planning application. This project will build a 500 kW turbine in a very windy area with plenty of commercial turbines but relatively little in the way of local benefit. We’ve been working to set up the co-op and explain the co-op model at public exhibitions held last month.
On the subject of supporting planning, the long-running Crida wind project in Shropshire is still in planning – please support us if you have not done so already at http://s.coop/cridaplans – we have been completing extra studies and hope to get to committee soon. Also in Shropshire is our Ludlow Hydro project – we have now raised £33,000 in pioneer shares and work on the planning application has now begun in earnest. The share offer is still open and if you wish to be involved at this early stage please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more info and a share offer document. Neen Sollars Hydro just 10 miles away has now raised an additional sum from its members to cover the cost of some construction delays (due in part, ironically,m to floods!) and is well on the way to full operation shortly.
On the solar front, we are working with a range of projects, from small rooftop installs to field-scale. A lot of projects are in the pipeline. First off the blocks is Malvern Community Energy who have a current share offer seeking £32,500 for the first of a number of planned solar PV installations in the Malvern area. The share offer is open until 9th May and should attract SEIS tax relief.
Over the border in Herefordshire we’re very proud of the new Leominster Sunrise co-op which brings together three things we really want to achieve. Firstly, it’s another example of a co-op building panels on a local authority building, something we are very keen on but which red tape often gets in the way of – luckily Herefordshire are taking a positive approach, which we hope is part of a more general movement across the UK. Secondly it’s being installed on a primary school as the school is being built – which feels like something we ought to be doing everywhere. And finally it has been supported through development by a loan from our first ever co-op, Leominster Community Solar. Co-op principle Six says co-ops support other co-ops and this is a great example. See http://leominstersunrise.org.uk/ for more details – the share offer will begin later in the Spring.