Installation of the UK’s biggest community-owned rooftop solar PV project was completed last month by Low Carbon Hub.
Comprising 2,444 solar PV panels and able to generate 636kW of electricity, the rooftop site will operate for 20 years at motorsport group Prodrive’s headquarters in Oxfordshire.
It is one of several rooftop solar projects completed over the summer by Low Carbon Hub. The Oxford-based social enterprise specialises in developing community-owned renewable energy in the county and re-invests its own surplus in the energy system.
The Hub is now looking for investors, promising a financial return over the 20 years of more than 5%, based on retail price index (RPI) + 3%. A minimum of £250 and a maximum of £100,000 can be invested.
“We worked very hard during the 2015 ‘clean energy dash’ to beat the FIT [Feed-in Tariffs] accreditation deadline for all of the projects in our 2016 Low Carbon Hub Solar PV Share Offer,” said chief executive Barbara Hammond.
“Now we want to invite local people who believe in a better energy system for Oxfordshire to invest in this portfolio of solar projects and earn themselves a bank-beating return.”
A third of the revenue will cover installation and maintenance costs and another third will pay investors returns. The final third will go into the Hub’s community benefit fund, to which the scheme is expected to add £240,000, projected at £3.5m over 20 years.
David Richard, chairman of Prodrive, said: “The scheme run by the Low Carbon Hub is an excellent way to reduce our carbon footprint, lower our energy bills, while also generating significant funds to re-invest in further schemes within the local community.”
The installation will help the company save over 5,600 tonnes of CO2 over the lifetime of the project and provide discounted electricity, at no cost to the business.
Low Carbon Hub has set out its vision for the £3.5m fund – which will include further renewable energy installations in Oxfordshire – in a manifesto.
In this article
- Barbara Hammond
- clean energy dash
- community energy
- community-owned renewable energy
- discounted electricity
- energy system
- green energy
- Low Carbon Hub
- Low-carbon economy
- Photovoltaic system
- Renewable energy
- renewable energy installations
- Renewable energy technology
- retail price index
- soc ent
- Social enterprise
- Solar power
- solar PV
- Sustainable energy
- United Kingdom
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