Garve & District Community Energy Group
The Community Energy Project
Many communities across Scotland have undertaken Community Energy projects to meet the challenges of generating their own “green” energy and reducing the amount of energy we waste. The Garve and District Energy Group (GDCE) were formed to develop similar projects, with the help of the windfarm money, for our community. The aim of GDCE is to reduce energy costs for households in the Garve and District Community Council area.
As we all use energy to heat and light our homes, a Community Energy scheme would ensure that everyone benefits from secured funds.
Communities across Scotland have found that reducing energy bills is best achieved by improving home energy efficiency and by developing local renewable energy to provide long term community income. Some have developed their own wind turbine or hydro-electric schemes. The income has enabled their residents to install energy efficiency measures and renewable energy in their homes. They have been able to provide grants in addition to funds available from the Government.
GDCE followed this approach to include all properties, owned or rented, large or small and whether residents have or have not already bought into renewable energy government grant schemes.
The Energy Group has been exploring options to deliver these objectives. We work with the Community Development Company to secure funds both from LCT and other sources to make them happen.
Our efforts have been directed towards:
The Garve and District Warmer Homes Scheme
The group can arrange FREE Home Energy visits to any resident within the Garve and District Area. A number of homes have already benefitted from visits. A significant number have had measures installed. The visits are carried out by Home Energy Scotland. They can help you sort out what you need to do and what you are entitled to apply for to improve your homes energy efficiency and lower your energy bills. To sign up for a free Home Energy visit or to ask any questions about the scheme, please contact GDCE.
Community Owned Renewable Energy
The group have explored opportunities to develop a hydro-electric scheme in the area. We’ve also looked into other possibilities for community owned “renewables”. At present however, a community owned generation project does not represent a good investment to the community. This is largely due to the Government ending payments to communities for locally generated energy in April 2019. We’ll be keeping a close eye on what might be on offer in the future.
The number of residential household who have received the annual £250 grant towards energy costs has risen from 124 to 138 of our 172 households. Keep an eye on the website for news of the 2019 grant.
Low energy lightbulbs
Over 900 low energy lightbulbs have been distributed to households significantly reducing the amount of electricity needed for household lighting.
Insulation and draught proofing
Those who visited the Energy Drop In event were able to order simple draught proofing and insulation items free of charge. These will available to order with your 2019 Energy Grant application.
GDCE has been set up as a focal point to engage with residents and develop energy related ideas, suggestions and initiatives. We’re working to give more detail on how the community’s investment is reaping rewards.
You can contact us and show support and forward your ideas to take the community forward through the website, please leave comments below.