The Department for Energy and Climate Change (Decc) has unveiled changes to renewable energy subsidies and additional funding to support the development of community-scale renewables, including energy-from-waste projects.
A £10m Urban Community Energy Fund will allow community groups in England to bid for grants of up to £20,000, or loans of up to £130,000.
“I want to give more people the power to generate their own electricity and by supporting community energy projects we can, helping them drive down their energy bills at the same time,” said energy and climate change secretary Ed Davey.
“This is all about investing in renewable energy sources, creating jobs and changing the way renewable energy is developed in the UK.”
Decc has also announced amendments to its Feed in Tariff (FIT) Scheme that will allow more community-scale renewables developers to access the subsidies.
The changes include:
- allowing registered charities to join the scheme,
- allowing two community projects each up to 5MW to share a single grid connection and receive separate FITs,
- extending the scheme for an extra six months,
Kathy Smyth, policy director at Community Energy England, an organisation representing the community energy sector, said: “Without risking the integrity of the wider FIT scheme, this will stimulate community involvement in larger renewable schemes.”