Members' newsletter 15th April 2016
A big thank you to all of you who responded to SE2 Ltd’s survey in February looking at the sector’s views for the future of community energy, regional working, peer-mentoring and the type of support that would be useful from Community Energy England and the Community Energy Hub. The findings from the survey are available here and make for some interesting reading. Respondents were generally pessimistic about the outlook for the sector in the next twelve months (particularly those of you in the West Midlands!), but were more positive about the sector over a three year period. Key challenges, unsurprisingly, were thought to include business models and funding in a reduced FIT world, completing pre-accredited projects on time, managing policy uncertainty, planning/consents and maximising community benefits. Innovations of interest in the coming year were new sources of funding, new business models and energy storage. Local/regional networks were popular with around 2/3 of respondents belong to a local or regional network. We will be using all of these finding to develop our work programme over the next 12 months and will report back in future newsletters.
One key issue that keeps arising in my discussions with members, partners and government is the lack of accurate data related to the sector. To tackle this we will be conducting research over the next couple of months to feed into a State of the Sector report which we will publish later this year. This month we have also taken over responsibility for the Community Energy Hub and will be working with members and the wider sector to further develop the resources on there to ensure it is of most value to helping groups during this transition period.
If you have any ideas related to the kind of support you would find useful or particular information you would like to see in the State of the Sector report or on the Community Energy Hub, please get in touch.
Community Energy England