“Community Energy Champions” Wanted

Press Release - Tuesday 6 June 2023

Wanted “Community Energy Champions” to develop local Low Carbon Energy Projects across East Cambridgeshire.

The East Cambridgeshire Climate Action Network (CAN) is looking for “Community Energy Champions” in Ely and from across the whole of East Cambridgeshire to develop their own local community energy projects initiated by LOCAL people and WANTED by the local community. Potential “Community Energy Champions” are invited to attend a meeting at St Mary’s Church, Ely on 15 June 2023 – to be inspired, encouraged and supported to develop a local community energy project, in with their local community.

Aimed at addressing the current energy crisis and the climate change challenge, projects could take on a variety of different formats like local energy clubs where people get together to share experiences of reducing energy costs and improving the energy efficiency of their homes.

Or, it could be local residents getting together with greater “bargaining power” to put solar PV panels on their roofs and being able to get a good deal from a supplier who could install ten systems locally rather than just one.

More ambitious projects could involve establishing community Solar energy Farm as at the village of Reach or a community wind turbine as in Gamlingay; a village wide Heat Pump Network as at Swaffham Prior or an Award-Winning Community-based Eco Building – like the Gamlingay EcoHub.

Jethro Gauld, Chair, East Cambs CAN said:

“More projects like these would also help East Cambridgeshire District Council meet its climate targets set in the wake of the 2019 Climate Emergency declaration.”

Event Organiser Peter Bates considers that:

“East Cambridgeshire communities should get engaged and work towards finding local solutions to reducing energy costs and help towards mitigating the effects of climate change. It is even possible for some renewable energy projects to reduce the cost of electricity locally and get paid for sending it back to the National Grid.”

He said that:

“East Cambs CAN wants to act as a facilitator for encouraging the development of local energy projects and help “Local Energy Champions” to have access to expertise and other resources based upon experiences from across England and Wales.”

Lorna Dupre, Chair of Cambridgeshire County Council’s Environment & Green Investment Committee, responsible for the County Council’s energy policy stated:

“Our ambition is to deliver net zero carbon emissions for Cambridgeshire by 2045, and support communities and our natural environment to adapt and thrive as the climate changes. I fully support this initiative from East Cambridgeshire Climate Action Network which aligns with the County Council’s recently approved Community Energy Policy. The County Council has established some key principles to steer its future energy collaborations with local communities, and is now scoping what resources may be available to support communities to bring forward and deliver successful community energy schemes.”

This event forms part of a National Campaign – “Community Energy Fortnight” running from 10-23 June 2023

More information can be found on the East Cambs Climate Action website, where you can book to attend the event: