Select Committee on Environmental Audit Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence

Annex A


  The Community Renewables Initiative will help local people and organisations devise and implement renewable energy developments which:

    —  are environmentally sensitive;

    —  have support of all stakeholders;

    —  are appropriate to the circumstances of the locality;

    —  link to other diversification and regeneration schemes.

  It will help groups and individuals realise that renewable energy can form part of the regeneration of places—from remote rural areas to market towns, from farmed landscapes to villages, and even cities and their edges.

  It could mean environmentally sensitive developments of:

    —  solar roofs; biomass and wood heat schemes; farm waste schemes; small, medium, and in some instances, large wind turbines.

  In places like:

    —  schools; hospitals; offices; shops; farms; community halls and housing developments.

  Bringing benefits like:

    —  skills; livelihoods; income; education opportunities and local heating schemes.

  All of which can bring new vitality to places.

  In each of 10 different areas of England, a partnership of organisations has been formed to help localities devise their own ideas and developments for renewable energy. Called Local Support Teams, these partnerships involve local councils, energy experts, government bodies, and other specialists. They will provide free advice and training on all the topics associated with renewable energy:

    —  feasibility studies;

    —  funding;

    —  technology issues;

    —  planning;

    —  environmental assessment;

    —  public participation.

  On a national level, training events and seminars will be available to all participating in the initiative, and a website will provide illustrated examples, a discussion board, and information guides.

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