Frank GordonProject Manager, Westmill Solar Cooperative
Westmill Solar Farm                UK’s first (& we think                 world’s largest)                Next to Westmi...
Westmill Solar FarmPurchase process: £16.5 million project Over £5m share  sales (A & B) Raising debt- in  progress c....
Big 6 Utility Renewables Shareholders benefit (based where?) No or very little compensation/benefits to local people Na...
Community renewables Financial returns go to local people People can buy their “own” electricity Communities doing it f...
How to start a project?Requirements: Site, landowner on board Community! Detailed planning submission(s), technical and...
Bear in mind Consider organisation’s rules carefully (eg ‘B’ shares) Build in time for FSA and legal clearance and  spre...
The future New models? Energy saving, energy efficiency New technologies? RHI, offshore wind Dedicated community Feed-i...
A new, national, not-for-profit web platform forcommunity shares in sustainable energy projects      Easier to find commun...
Contact             Frank Gordon          ftagordon@gmail.com             @renewables_uk          www.westmillsolar.coop
Transition Network Conference 2012 - Community Energy Workshop -  Community Renewables with Frank Gordon of Westmill Solar...
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Transition Network Conference 2012 - Community Energy Workshop - Community Renewables with Frank Gordon of Westmill Solar Cooperative

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Part of the 'Bringing Power to the People: starting your own community renewable energy project' workshop held at the Transition Network Conference 2012, London, UK.

Presented by Chris Rowland of OVESCO, Peter Capener of Bath and West Community Energy, Allan Shepherd, author of "The Home Energy Handbook", and Frank Gordon of Westmill Solar Cooperative. Chaired by Peter Lipman of Transition Network.

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Transition Network Conference 2012 - Community Energy Workshop - Community Renewables with Frank Gordon of Westmill Solar Cooperative

  1. 1. Frank GordonProject Manager, Westmill Solar Cooperative
  2. 2. Westmill Solar Farm  UK’s first (& we think world’s largest)  Next to Westmill wind farm- Adam Twine  Built July 2011; unanimous approval  30 acre site, 20,000 panels  4.5Gwh/year  2,000 tonnes CO2  1,400 homes
  3. 3. Westmill Solar FarmPurchase process: £16.5 million project Over £5m share sales (A & B) Raising debt- in progress c.9-11% pa IRR for members (FITs & PPA) 1,650 members
  4. 4. Big 6 Utility Renewables Shareholders benefit (based where?) No or very little compensation/benefits to local people National contractors likely to be used (economies of scale across projects) Small community fund may be provided Control of asset? What connection to local area/people?
  5. 5. Community renewables Financial returns go to local people People can buy their “own” electricity Communities doing it for themselves An alternative to the Big Six One person one vote member-led decision making AGMs with real democracy Creates passionate advocates Research shows members change attitudes to energy Potential for 3.5GW of community power in the UK
  6. 6. How to start a project?Requirements: Site, landowner on board Community! Detailed planning submission(s), technical and financial models Project management/continuity Specialist legal / technical / financial skills Some upfront resources (pre-planning) Stamina and persistence! (1-3 year projects)
  7. 7. Bear in mind Consider organisation’s rules carefully (eg ‘B’ shares) Build in time for FSA and legal clearance and spreading the word How to cover upfront costs (early investors, landowners?) Make the case to investors on a range of issues (resilience, energy security, climate, financial)- appeals to many Back up plans & project continuity
  8. 8. The future New models? Energy saving, energy efficiency New technologies? RHI, offshore wind Dedicated community Feed-in-Tariff to support projects Ethical share exchange, Ethex, December 2012 Crowdfunding sources Abundance & Microgenius…
  9. 9. A new, national, not-for-profit web platform forcommunity shares in sustainable energy projects Easier to find community shares to buyEasier to promote and manage your share offer www.microgenius.org.uk
  10. 10. Contact Frank Gordon ftagordon@gmail.com @renewables_uk www.westmillsolar.coop

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