Newsletter – February 2017

1. Bethesda trial – cost cutting energy bills! 

Good news – word on the street is that since joining the project a couple of months ago some people are already starting to see their energy bills come down! Great news!

We are continuing to fit smart meters for newer joiners – this is an essential element to the project as it enables us to track how much energy is being used at different times of the day and then match this to local renewable energy output. We also continue to move participants onto the Energy Local energy tariff in partnership with Co-operative Energy. Over 100 people are currently taking part in the trial and we will be recruiting more participants from the Bethesda area in the coming months once Ynni Ogwen completes their community-owned hydro scheme in the area.

This is a learning curve for all of us involved and behind the scenes, we are developing new systems to automate the processes needed to set up a scheme. This will make the whole system more efficient and user-friendly, ready for when the time comes to expand this model across the UK. We are also going to be launching a new website with additional resources and support for participants – watch this space!

2. 2017 and beyond – roll out of Energy Local model 

IMG_20170208_160054179 (1)Last month we spent a great couple of day’s working out the next steps for Energy Local with community energy practitioners from Wales, Scotland, the North of England and London.  Thanks again to everyone who took part – it was great to have so much expertise in the room. We all need incentives so we awarded ourselves chocolates along the way. Thanks to climate charity 10:10 for all their help organising this.

We have also incorporated an Energy Local CIC (Community Interest Company – a form of social enterprise), which will eventually become a membership organisation for Energy Local Clubs as they develop, having learned some valuable lessons from the Bethesda trial.

3. Tools for new Energy Local Clubs – could your scheme stack up?  

Chris and Robin at Energy Local have been busy improving our modelling tools with some help from Community Energy Scotland and Local Partnerships to help groups to look at the financial viability of potential projects with different types of renewables (e.g. wind, solar, hydro) and buildings (domestic and non-domestic), and identify the best way of forming an Energy Local club. This will be one of a number of tools and resources we’ll be offering to community energy groups setting up projects later this year.

4. This months blog – Cyd Ynni = Energy Together

Mel fromIMG_0846 Partneriaeth Ogwen, is one of the key people running the Energy Local pilot project in Bethesda. She tells us more about the place, the people and the realities (warts and all) of running this scheme and shares some lovely pics from local events. Click here to read more.