The number of community-owned renewable energy projects in Scotland has increased by 62% since 2011.
The SNP Government has a strong track record of supporting community empowerment and helping communities take steps to develop new renewable energy projects, despite huge subsidy cuts from the UK Tory Government.
Initiatives such as the Community Empowerment Act, the Local Energy Challenge Fund, and the Community and Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES) have helped to support communities in developing their own low carbon energy projects. Across Scotland, 456 communities are benefitting from wind, solar, hydro, heat pump and biomass projects.
The SNP Government has set targets of one gigawatt of community and locally-owned renewable energy produced by 2020, two gigawatts by 2030, and for at least half of all newly consented renewable energy projects to have an element of shared ownership by 2020.
Kenneth Gibson MSP said:
“Renewable energy is central to Scotland’s transition to a low-carbon future and it’s great to see so many communities already benefiting from these projects.
“As the planet continues to warm and the devastating impact of climate change are increasingly felt around the world, the need for small, community-orientated projects is becoming ever more important in our search for a sustainable future. Such projects not only help communities cut down on their carbon footprint, but also reduce costs in the longer-term.
“It is disappointing that the Tories at Westminster have cut subsidies for the renewable sector, denying this sector the support it needs to flourish. This should be rectified as a matter of urgency.”
For more information about the Local Energy Challenge Fund, please contact the Ayrshire Local Development Officer Karen McCaul at: email@example.com or telephone 07791 219 140.
Application guidance is available at: https://www.localenergy.scot/funding/ .