In January 2014 the Coalition government announced its Community Energy Strategy. At the same time Calderdale Council’s Cabinet voted to accept proposals for the Council to set up a community benefit society, Calderdale Community Energy, in partnership with local third sector organisations like Hebden Bridge Alternative Technology Centre and Pennine Community Power.
The aim is to support the development of community renewable energy projects in Calderdale.
Community energy projects are being held back by inadequate Government support, says a research report from University of East Anglia (UEA). Why does this matter? After all, community energy projects are small scale and aren’t going to change the world.
Still, the UK government’s 2009 Low Carbon Transition Plan places a lot of emphasis on the role of households and communities in reducing energy use and developing low carbon electricity generation, so presumably the Government that once declared itself the “greenest government ever” would want community energy to thrive.
But that was before David Cameron was reported as saying it was time to get rid of all the “green crap”.
Update 20.3.2022: The Observer reported yesterday that Cameron’s decision to cut ‘green crap’ now costs each household in England £150 a year. An analysis by Carbon Brief shows that energy bills in the UK are nearly £2.5bn higher than they would have been if climate policies had not been scrapped over the past decade. The Observer summarised:
“Analysis by Carbon Brief looked at the cumulative effect of ending onshore wind subsidies, cutting energy efficiency funding and scrapping a programme to make all new homes carbon neutral. It also factored in cuts to solar energy subsidies.
“With the energy price cap already at £1,277 a year and rising to £1,971 in less than a fortnight and an expected £3,000 in October, the analysis found that maintaining the green policies would have reduced energy costs by £8.3bn a year for the economy overall, part of which would equate to £150 a year per household.”
Richard Armitage, Housing Projects Manager at Calderdale Council, answers UCV Plain Speaker’s questions about whether the increase in Green Deal Communities funding, announced last week as part of the government’s new Community Energy Strategy, is likely to help his team’s work of improving home energy efficiency and reducing fuel poverty. Richard also outlines how this might tie in with the work of the Calderdale Community Energy community benefit society, which the Council is to set up in partnership with local third sector organisations.
On Monday 27th January, Calderdale Council Cabinet voted to accept proposals for the Council to set up a community benefit society, Calderdale Community Energy, in partnership with local third sector organisations like Hebden Bridge Alternative Technology Centre and Pennine Community Power.
Calderdale Community Energy will support the development of community renewable energy projects in Calderdale.
On Monday 27th January, Calderdale Council Cabinet will decide on a proposal to invest £10K of Calderdale Council money in obtaining the legal and financial advice needed to set up an Industrial and Provident Society (aka a Community Benefit Society) that will develop community renewable energy projects across Calderdale.
The DCarb meeting on 27th June mainly focussed on:
DCarb Upper Calder Valley is an umbrella group for local organisations that are working to reduce and adapt to climate change. It is open to new members. For more info, contact the secretary Anne Handley, via Hebden Bridge Alternative Technology Centre, tel: 01422 842121.
Calderdale Community Energy is working with people in Sowerby Bridge to develop a potential micro hydro scheme.
Update 26th November 2012
Following the various comments on this story (see comments box, below), I asked Emma Appleton, the Carbon Partnership Officer for Calderdale MBC, if she could clarify the situation further. Emma recently emailed that,