About this group
Brighton Energy Co-op aims to tap latent interest in solar generation around Brighton and Hove. Our ambition is to finance and run renewable installations in our city.
We focus on developing Brighton and Hove’s renewable capacity – and benefiting our community. Money is raised by selling shares in the co-op; revenue is then split between co-op members and low-carbon community projects.
We have raised preliminary finance and are currently in discussion with several potential sites. After our first project we aim to raise more money for more projects, as well as for other low carbon schemes.
- - we raised preliminary finance in January 2011
- - In February Jeremy Leggett of SolarCentury joined our advisory board
- - Caroline Lucas is a keen supporter
- - legal contracts in place and ready to go
- - we are in discussion with eight potential sites in Brighton and Hove.
- - 200 local supporters who have all said they are interested in joining the co-op when we are ready to launch
- - we are a registered Community Benefit Society and have a committed team (so far we've worked for nine months on the project). We meet every week.
Putting cash back into the community
Brighton Energy Co-op is a big project. We aim to create a 1000-strong organisation, all of whose members are committed to action on climate change. It is an opportunity with huge potential.
Movement such as Transition Towns demonstrate that large numbers of people can be mobilsed around a common idea. BEC will create the ability to finance and organise these projects, where necesary. The organisation also has the social networking capacity among members (and beyond) to create communications and promotional activity surrounding these projects.
Why we applied for the fund
While we have achieved a lot we still have a fair distance to go. We need finance for site costs (planning and building regulations), marketing our share offer, paying for scrutiny of our share offer document, as well as our directors - we recently calculated we'd put more than 3000 hours into the project so far!