Community Energy Plus, a charity and social enterprise which has been helping people living and working in Cornwall manage their energy needs since 1998, has been shortlisted for The Community Energy Awards 2014 in two categories.
These prestigious new awards recognise the outstanding achievements of those working to establish grassroots energy projects; where the social, environmental and financial benefits are embedded in the local community. The awards also seek to raise awareness of the possibilities afforded by the evolving Community Energy approach, encouraging local groups and aspiring individuals to realise their vision of producing clean, green energy, taking control of bills, supporting vulnerable people and transforming the energy system.
The Community Energy Club, which is administered by Community Energy Plus, is one of three ‘Energy Purchase Projects’ shortlisted. Covering Cornwall and West Devon, the club has experienced rapid and successful growth, and now has 2,227 members. Heating oil requirements are pooled either once or twice a month, depending on the season. Using this collaborative buying power, the club is able to negotiate with suppliers to secure a competitive price. This has resulted in a total saving by its members of £63,582.17 since the club started operating in November 2011.
Also shortlisted for a Community Energy Award as one of three ‘Campaigners of the Year’ is Neil Farrington, Senior Manager for Renewables & Communities at Community Energy Plus. Over the past ten years, Neil has worked with communities and businesses to build awareness of renewable energy options and energy efficiency projects in community settings, often supporting a whole village, town or parish to become more efficient and save money.
In 2010 Neil was instrumental in the development of Community Power Cornwall, a pioneering co-operative venture to develop small to medium scale community-owned renewable energy installations in communities across Cornwall.
Dr Tim Jones, Chief Executive of Community Energy Plus, was pleased to hear news of the award shortlist. “Community Energy is an important piece of the jigsaw as we move towards a decentralised energy system which integrates a range of clean, renewable technologies. We’re excited to be a part of the ‘community energy revolution’ the government is calling for. Community Energy Plus has a wealth of experience in helping bring projects to fruition, and we are always happy to talk to individuals or groups about their aspirations for community-owned energy generation.”
The final award winners will be announced at a ceremony at Oxford Town Hall on 4th September.