House of Lords calls on Government to support community energy projects

House of Lords calls on Government to support community energy projects

Published: 12 Aug 2022, 16:09

House of Lords calls on Government to support community energy projects. Image: NC

Members of the House of Lords have called on the government to promote the growth of community energy projects in its new Energy Bill.

It is hoped by incorporating the correct measures, community energy projects will be able to sell clean electricity directly to local citizens, says non-profit clean energy advocacy group Power for People.

This has been supported by a near majority of MPs and a broad national coalition including four of the UK’s six distribution network operators.

Currently there are no measures that would support this within the impending Energy Bill and industry is calling on this to change.

“There has been little or no growth in community-led generation schemes over the last six years,” said James Newcombe, the Lord Bishop of Carlisle.

“The benefits of more community schemes are considerable: they include a significant contribution to greenhouse gas reduction, greater energy security, more job creation opportunities, lower local energy bills and better community ownership of the transition to net zero. Local involvement and empowerment really matter.”

Steve Shaw, director of Power for People, said: “Community schemes need to be enabled to sell their electricity locally”.

“First the Commons have called for this, and now the Lords are calling for this, as a result of a nationwide public campaign. Yet the Government’s response is to ignore the statistics and simply say that no change is needed.”

Several community energy projects around the UK are being developed striving to promote both sustainable practices and energy reliance.

This includes what is anticipated to be the ‘largest’ scheme of its kind in the UK, according to Penderi Energy Project, in which 650 homes will be retrofitted to utilise solar energy in order to reduce their carbon footprint by as much as 350 tonnes annually.

The homes in Penderi will be fitted with battery energy storage systems (BESS) able to harness power generated via solar panels installed in suitable homes within the community.

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