Get support for your renewable energy projects (UK)
By Ben Brangwyn 1st February 2012
CSE and the Co-operative Community Energy Challenge
There’s a new initiative from The Co-operative being launched by the Centre for Sustainable Energy on 1-February called the Co-operative Community Energy Challenge. It’s an integral new element of The Co-operative’s Clean Energy Revolution campaign.
Here’s some info from their announcement:
The Community Energy Challenge will provide 12-18 months of enterprise development, mentoring, technical advice and community facilitation for six to eight communities, enabling them to initiate co-operative renewable energy projects at a significant scale (e.g. valued at £1m to £3m and/or rated in excess of 500kW). See www.cse.org.uk/coopenergychallenge for more details.
This support is being managed by CSE on behalf of The Co-operative. It builds on our PlanLoCaL programme and resources (see www.planlocal.org.uk) and aims to bring the selected community projects from across the UK to a state of readiness for further support and investment from The Co-operative Enterprise Hub and The Co-operative Bank. We also hope that it will dovetail with the Government’s proposed Rural Community Renewable Energy Fund in England (which is expected to invest in ‘at risk’ development costs for community-based renewable energy projects of this scale and larger) and other similar initiatives in the devolved nations.
There is a two-stage competitive application process for groups to become part of the Community Energy Challenge with deadline for stage 1 – expressions of interest – on 29 February 2012. We’re also offering support during the application process to help communities develop strong bids, even from a standing start. Lack of technical know-how should not be a barrier and communities with ambition are encouraged to apply.
Both of these organisations are first rate and anyone who can get onto this scheme will undoubtedly get a lot of extremely valuable help.