21 November | Investing in Community Energy in Plymouth

After our first community energy investment to Bristol Energy Cooperative we are very pleased to invest £610k from our Community Investment Fund in Plymouth Energy Community to support the development and running of the Ernesettle solar array and to help tackle the high levels of local fuel poverty.

Plymouth Energy Community (PEC) is an award-winning community benefit society working with a dual purpose – by delivering community renewable energy schemes as well as operating core services for local vulnerable people and people in fuel poverty. PEC aim to reduce energy bills, improve energy efficiency and generate a local green energy supply and to positively change Plymouth’s energy future.  PEC’s work has already benefited more than 11,000 households to date, with over £200,000 fuel debt cleared and over £340,000 energy savings made.  Alongside the development of core frontline services, in 2014 PEC set up PEC Renewables, another Community Benefit Society, to fund and build community-owned renewable energy installations in the city. 

Our investment facilitates long-term community ownership of an important local renewable energy asset. The Ernesettle solar array will generate £600,000 in rental payments to Four Greens Community Trust to support local regeneration activities in a deprived area of the city. An estimated £2.9M will be generated over 25 years to fight fuel poverty and climate change in Plymouth.

 Dave Garland (PEC Renewables Chairman) : “We are very excited to have agreed this loan with Social and Sustainable Capital: It has helped us to achieve our ambition to keep the Ernesettle array in long-term community ownership. Our Community Share offer for the project closes on the 4th of December. We have already raised over £700k and are hoping to reach our funding target of just over £1M so that many more investors can support our community energy work as well as generate an envisaged return of 6%.”  More information about the Share offer can be obtained via www.ethex.org.uk/PECR