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New funding for community-scale renewables

Developers of small-scale renewable energy projects, including some energy-from-waste schemes, can benefit from fresh financial support made available by the Green Investment Bank (GIB).

The investment – £50m from the GIB and £10m from the Strathclyde Pension Fund – will be managed by Albion Community Power (ACP), a power generation company that builds, owns and operates renewable energy plants across the UK.

ACP will try to attract a further £40m from other investors to take the total sum of investable capital to £100m.

The finance will be used to provide equity funding of between £1m and £10m to a range of community-scale renewable construction projects, including anaerobic digestion and landfill gas.

Volker Beckers, chairman of ACP, said: “We are delighted to welcome GIB and Strathclyde as new investors. It is a clear sign that institutional demand for community-scale renewable energy is growing.”

The schemes will be built in partnership with other developers, such as Infinite Renewables, based in Bridgend, Wales; and Green Highland Renewables, from Perth, Scotland.  

Lord Smith of Kelvin, chairman of the GIB, said: “The UK is in the process of transforming how it generates its power.

“In future we will see less reliance on a small number of large power stations and more focus on a network of smaller, locally generated, renewable sources of power.”

The first project to be developed through the scheme is a hydro-power facility on the River Allt Coire Chaorach near Crianlarich, Scotland (photo above). The £8.5m development will generate 8GWh of electricity per year.

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