Exeter Community Energy launches pioneering Community Fund

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Authored by News Desk
Posted Tuesday, August 29, 2017 - 12:40pm

Exeter Community Energy (ECOE) has launched their exciting Community Fund for 2017, which is designed to fund local projects that promote energy-savings and/or help to alleviate fuel poverty within the local community.

They are interested in receiving applications from a range of local organisations: charities, social enterprises, town and parish councils, schools/other educational organisations, and local constituted clubs and societies.

ECOE is a social enterprise that sets up community-owned renewable energy projects that promote community involvement, shared benefits and the transition to a low-carbon society. In 2015, they initiated a community funded solar rooftop project, through which eight buildings – Shillingford Organics, Wonford Learning & Community Centre, The Beehive Community Centre (Honiton), Glasshouse Medical Centre (Countess Weir), Pinhoe Road Baptist Church, Exeter Library, Exeter College Technology Centre, and Great Moor House (Sowton) -- have now received installations.

The project has generated over 230,000 kWh to date -- enough to power 58 average homes each year -- and has saved over 104 tonnes of carbon equivalent from being released into our atmosphere. 

ECOE’s solar rooftop project will provide energy cost-savings for host sites; alternative, local solar energy; and predicted financial benefits for share-holders and for the local community through the provision of Community Fund. ECOE estimate that £200,000 could be made available through their Community Fund during the 20-year lifespan of their solar project.

This year we see the launch of ECOE’s Community Fund, with a pot of £4,200 (£3,000 from solar profits and £1,200 donated interest from shareholders).

This will be used to fund projects that will provide energy-saving benefits and/or alleviate fuel poverty in the local community. The deadline for project proposal submission is 5pm on 30th September.

During October, ECOE will hold a Collaborative Allocation event and applicants that have met the funding criteria will be invited to discuss their project proposals with everyone in attendance. This will offer a truly open and engaging way to select the best overall options collaboratively in a supportive, non-competitive environment. The event will be open to all: ECOE members, supporters, directors and volunteers, anyone who lives and/or works in the local area, local organisations including those who host ECOE’s solar roof installations, and energy/community-based social enterprises.

At the heart of ECOE is community involvement, shared benefits and the transition to a low-carbon society. Their belief is that fair and open collaboration can initiate projects that bring about changes, offering many benefits. If you are interested in finding out more about ECOE, or getting involved in any way, contact them at info@ecoe.org.uk or visit their website, where there will also be further details on the Community Fund application requirements and an application form.

 

Pictured: Exeter Community Energy’s largest solar installation is on the roof of Exeter College Technology Centre. This impressive 150 kWp installation is already providing benefits for all stakeholders.