Powering ahead for a better future

There is a quiet energy revolution taking place across the Outer Hebrides where a number of communities are harnessing natural resources for significant local gain.

Community groups throughout the Islands have reached a major milestone with the installation of 10.5MW of community energy and a further 11MW to install in 2015.

Five Community Trusts have now installed large-scale wind turbines, and with the income they aim to tackle projects dealing with fuel poverty, transport and housing.

Community Energy Scotland, who have assisted the groups, are hosting an event on Thursday 11th of December at 6.30pm in Martin’s Memorial Hall, Stornoway to showcase local successes.

There will also be information on the exciting opportunity for local people to invest in a local renewable energy scheme.

Talking about the event Kathleen Macdonald of Community Energy Scotland, said: “Community energy projects were the first to install large scale renewables on the islands and have been at the forefront of renewable developments across Scotland.

“This is a great opportunity for the Development Trusts to showcase what they have achieved and to inform and inspire other communities and the general public.”

Everyone interested in community energy, whether living in a community with a project already in place, or as part of a group looking at installing renewable energy, should go along.

This event will detail the experiences which groups such as Horshader Community Development in Shawbost have gone through to get their turbine installed.

Urras Energy (part of Galson Estate) will be there to explain their share offer opportunity and how anyone can invest.

The event will also highlight projects which Trusts such as Coimhearsnachd Bharraidh agus Bhatarsaidh are able to fund, as well as the application process.

As part of this event there will also be sessions on local energy economies and how these could help new groups to install renewables, and on the proposed Energy Supply Company (ESCO) which is aiming to sell locally sourced energy to households.