Community Renewable Energy
As well as helping to tackle climate change, renewable energy provides potential sources of income to communities, offers cost savings, and can be an efficient way of putting renewable natural resources like wood and organic waste to productive use.
These schemes require access to land and waterways, planning and abstraction permissions and, often, connection to the national energy distribution infrastructure.
Our report for the National Trust ‘Social and Economic Benefits of Community Energy Schemes’ indicated that increased autonomy, empowerment and resilience by providing a long term income and local control over finances, often in areas where there are few other options for generating wealth. Other benefits include opportunities for education, a strengthened sense of place and an increase in visitors to the area.
We think that there is potential for small scale renewable energy to be fully integrated into area wide approaches to the management of land and natural resources, creating new markets, and new income streams, for social enterprises managing woodlands, farms and parks.
Scroll down to the posts below to read some of our latest work on community energy projects across the country.
We love to explore and discuss land-use topics, so don't be shy - join us online and let us know all about your ideas and issues!
This report was commissioned by the National Trust to explore the social and economic benefits of community energy schemes and the role of the National Trust in supporting such schemes. It looks in detail at a community hydro scheme on National Trust land at Abergwyngregyn in Wales. [Read the full report here]
As part of Community Energy Fortnight we are publishing a joint report with the National Trust and the Clore Social Leadership Programme that looks at the social and economic benefits delivered by community owned renewable schemes.
We are conducting a research project looking at social innovation, how it scales and how it retains or grows its social impact. Here we look in more detail at the history of the community led renewable energy generation. We’re keen to get feedback on this work as it develops. Please take a look and leave a comment.