Do you like fancy chocolates – then read on!
To date Dorset Community Energy has raised nearly half a million pounds from community share offers and installed 420kW on 16 schools and community buildings across Dorset. We are currently paying our members 5.5% interest on their investment, and will shortly start paying back the capital.
DCE have not installed any new PV for 2 years now, as the Feed-in tariff subsidy diminished and the tax incentives for community energy were removed.
However, installation costs have reduced, the Low Carbon Dorset programme have grants on offer to help fund installations, and energy storage options are now available.
Hence we are considering further share offers, and are interested in your opinion regarding the options. Any new projects would be legally and financially separate from current projects, so they would not add any risk to existing investments.
Your response will strengthen our chance of securing grant funding for a feasibility study. Please reply by 23:59 on Sunday 20th May, and you will have a chance to win a box of locally produced high quality chocolates.
To date Dorset Community Energy has only been able to provide monitoring equipment and educational activities for schools where we have installed solar panels. Now, we have secured a grant of £1,750 from the Postcode Local Trust (a grant-giving charity funded by players of People’s Postcode Lottery www.postcodelocaltrust.org.uk) for Damers First School in Dorchester.
This year’s AGM will be held in Bridport on Tuesday 17th July at 7pm, venue to be confirmed. The papers will be sent to members electronically at least three weeks in advance of the meeting. Please save the date and come along.
Pete West, Dorset Community Energy secretary and a volunteer helping with educational activities, has produced a short video to demonstrate how to make a spinning paper plate solar model, which has proved popular with children of primary school age.
The video can be viewed on YouTube at this link https://youtu.be/sHzHEC_SyIc
In 2017, DCE’s 420kW of installed solar photovoltaic capacity generated 423,000 kWh of electricity, that’s 5% higher than predicted, which is likely to mean that members will benefit from 5.5% interest on their investment again this year.
Have you ever wondered why people talk about kilowatts peak when they are talking about solar photovoltaic panels? Or perhaps your friends mock your investment in solar energy, because solar panels are only 15% efficient?
Well here is the answer!
Following acceptance of the Dorset Community Energy Annual Accounts at the AGM held on 12th July and approval of the directors’ recommendation to pay members 5.5% interest, payments to members were completed by 9th September. The directors are optimistic that the target 5%-6% p.a. interest on members’ shares will be maintained in future years, subject to no unforeseen circumstances.
Dorset Community Energy secretary, Pete West, and Dorset County Council’s Sustainable Schools Project Officer, Alison Jay, met with local educational charity Development Education in Dorset (DEED) in July to develop a sustainable energy and climate change funding application to the Scottish Power Foundation. The project was named ‘Climate Connections’ and is based on sharing information on climate change and sustainable energy solutions between schools in Africa and in Dorset. DEED was set up in 1983 as a centre for global education and learning. They have worked with over 1000 teachers and 350 pupils in Dorset and Hampshire over the last year and have extensive experience of teacher training.
Following the Paris Climate Agreement, evidence of rising global CO2 emissions and impacts of climate change, it is widely becoming accepted that ‘we are all in this together’. In February the directors agreed that Dorset Community Energy joins the International Network for Sustainable Energy (INFORSE), an NGO network which was established at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 and currently has 75 member organisations in 35 European countries and 180 member organisations globally.
We are happy to share Tom’s undergraduate research survey and encourage you to take ten minutes to complete it.
… I am researching how the public engage with renewable energy. Specifically, I am interested in two activities: investing in Community Energy, and purchasing ‘green’ renewable energy tariffs at home…