New solar co-op project launches in Scotland

Dundee Renewable Energy Society hopes the project will generate £10,000 a year to support community projects

A new community solar energy project is launching near Invergowrie, near Dundee.

Dundee Renewable Energy Society (DRES) is looking to develop a solar panel installation as part of its efforts to develop sustainable community energy and alleviating fuel poverty in and around the city of Dundee.

The Invergowrie Solar Meadow, a relatively small two-megawatt solar installation on land owned by sustainability research body James Hutton Institute, will be funded by a share offer, with investors joining the co-op.

DRES – a not-for profit community benefit society established in 2018 – held an online information event for local people earlier this month to show them how they could get involved in the project, which is designed to maximise positive benefits for the local area.

The project, which is being supported by Energy4All, is expected to generate at least £10,000 annually which will be used to support local causes through a community benefit fund. The total community benefit over the 20-25 lifetime of solar meadow is projected to be over £700,000.

It will supply approximately 27% of the James Hutton Institute’s annual electricity needs and remove around 7% of its current total CO2e emissions.

Dres chair Richard McCready said “This is an exciting opportunity to generate renewable solar energy in partnership with The James Hutton Institute. Everyone has their part to play in reducing carbon emission and the Invergowrie Solar Meadow is a real step forward. As a co-operative it’s important for the community to be at the heart of the project and we look forward to sharing how local people can get involved”

Joshua Msika, sustainability co-ordinator at The James Hutton Institute, added: “This solar meadow project perfectly illustrates the ‘Just Transition’, bringing both climate and social benefits. It will provide us with zero-carbon electricity at an affordable price and in exchange, our electricity bill will fund community projects in our area while offering shareholders a reasonable return.”

More information at