Energy4All and ClearWinds have joined forces to create Devon Community Wind Co-operative, a new energy project in Devon. The two have just launched an advertising campaign to inform the public across Devon about the benefits new wind co-operatives could bring to the while county, helping it to become ‘more green and pleasant’.
The campaign is developed by Ethos public relations, a Manchester-based PR agency, and aims to promote new wind energy projects. Energy4All is working with ClearWinds to develop single wind turbines on land in North Devon, West Devon and South Hams. ClearWinds is investigating the sites and will be making planning applications to the relevant local authorities.
The new co-operative, set up by Energy4All, will construct, own and operate the wind turbines that are granted planning consent. Once fully financed, the co-op and its founding board will construct the turbines with assistance from Energy4All.
Local residents will be able to become shareholders in four wind turbines in the county. Participation can start from just £250 and the maximum investment is £20,000.
In this way they will earn a return on an ethical investment. The co-op will be wholly owned by its members and will be run democratically on a one-member-one-vote basis. There will be no major shareholders. Community co-operative ownership of wind turbines also enables landowners to gain an additional income stream.
To meet the EU target of 15% renewable energy generation by 2012 more electricity will have to be generated through renewable sources by 2020. The joint project is also addressing climate change concerns by reminding people in Devon about the important contribution wind turbines can make to the transformation and development of the energy market.
John Malone, Development Director at Energy4All, said: “In order for the proposed Devon Community Wind Co-operative to succeed, we very much want the people of Devon to get behind it in any way they can.
“The intention is that all three projects will be owned by the new co-operative. And we are encouraging people from all walks of life to get involved, with first priority being given to people living close to the projects and then to Devon residents.”
John Malone adds: “We have a great opportunity now, to really start making inroads into creating a ‘greener’ and more energy self sufficient county.”
Energy4All was established in 2002 to expand the number of renewable energy projects across the UK and is the UK’s leading expert in renewable energy co-operatives. The organisation has created seven renewable energy co-operatives across the UK, and is continuing to develop additional projects.
ClearWinds was established in 2008 to facilitate the development of wind power, to offer a combination of industry experience, community involvement and benefits.
The Devon Community Wind Co-operative welcomes the support of Devon residents to create a greener Devon. Those interested in supporting the wind energy projects or willing to get involved in the setting up of the co-operative can visit www.devonwind.coop