Community groups across the UK will now be able to bid for a share of £8million to install low carbon heating such as solar thermal panels, biomass boilers and heat pumps into homes in their local area.
From today, community-based organisations including community co-operatives, voluntary groups, social enterprises and development trusts will be eligible to apply.
Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: “Clean green generation at a local level is a key part of our energy future and I hope that communities of all shapes and sizes will get on board and take advantage of all this scheme has to offer.”
Phillip Sellwood, CEO at the Energy Saving Trust said: “Working together can make the process of upgrading to renewable heating easier and more affordable for everyone. This scheme will provide a great opportunity for community groups to prove once again that they can have a real impact in reducing carbon emissions and energy costs in their homes, whilst empowering communities to be more sustainable.”
Community groups will need to submit a first stage application to the Energy Saving Trust by 7 September 2012. Applications will be judged on a range of criteria, including the project’s vision, potential benefits for the local area, potential partners and any relevant experience of delivering similar projects.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) expects to support between 50 and 100 projects with the £8million fund and will announce the winners in December this year.
DECC has today also announced winners of this year’s £10million RHPP social landlord competition, helping to get low carbon heating systems into the homes of thousands of social housing tenants.
Registered providers for social housing across Great Britain such as local authorities and social housing associations were able to bid for up to £175,000 of the £10million pot of money.
Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: “It’s great to see there’s so much enthusiasm for the second year of our social landlord scheme.
“These projects will help install three times more low carbon heating systems in tenants’ homes across the nation than last year’s scheme, helping even more people move away from expensive old heating systems to low carbon alternatives.”
72 successful projects have been selected on their value for money, type of fuel being replaced, energy savings secured and track record on delivering similar initiatives. The highest number of winners are located in the South West area and projects will need to be completed by 31st March 2013.