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January news from ECOE
Happy New Year to all our friends and supporters!

Thanks very much for all of your support in 2014, it was a great first year in which we made important strides towards achieving our goals.

Here’s what we’ve got coming up in 2015 and how you can help make it an even bigger success.
Solar PV1
We know a lot of potential community investors are eager to invest and we can’t wait to turn your money into a fairer and greener energy supply, so here’s an update on where we are.

ECOE was legally constituted in January last year with an initial target to develop and commission a community-owned renewable energy project – Solar PV1. In many senses, we’re almost there. We have a passionate and engaged base of members, volunteers and supporters. We have a robust business plan, financial model and governance structure. We’ve already done a lot of the preparation needed to launch a community share offer. We have surveyed sites all over Exeter and have signed heads of terms agreements with two of them – Shillingford Organics and Wonford Community and Learning Centre.

One large roof that made the share offer viable is now on hold and may not progress at all. In order to launch a viable share offer, we need to bring more roofs like this into the project.

We are talking to a lot of sites already - some are at an early stage, some are more advanced - but with no legal agreements in place we can’t be sure that they’ll come to fruition.

Now is the time to re-focus and re-double our efforts on this front. We – everyone already working behind the scenes and anyone else who wants this project to happen – need to do two things:
  1. Identify new leads. We have spoken to many organisations already, but if you know someone who might be a useful contact – someone with links to any business, public sector organisation, charity/not-for-profit or community organisation with a roof around 300m2 or bigger - please let us know. Speak to your friends, family and colleagues about the project – our experience shows the more we talk about it, the more leads emerge.
  2. Work through the nitty gritty of turning our existing leads into signed-up project partners. This is sometimes complicated but always really interesting work, and all you need to get involved is a bit of spare time and a can-do attitude. Get in touch if this is you.
Right now we can’t commit to a date for the share offer, but by working together we can move it forward much more quickly. Please get involved!
Volunteer with ECOE

We’re planning to hold a volunteer evening in March for anyone who wants to get more involved, which we’ll send out notifications for in due course, but there is no need to wait until then!

Click here to find out what you can do, or get in touch with us today.
Exeter’s Energy Future events series

Our latest event in association with Transition Exeter:
From ‘dirty’ energy to sustainable energy:
UK Energy Policy and the role of community energy

With Catherine Mitchell, professor of Energy Policy at Exeter University and lead author with the IPCC
Tuesday 10th February, 18:45
Catherine will explore what’s needed for the transition from ‘dirty’ energy to sustainable energy, whether UK Energy policy is being successful and would a larger role for community energy facilitate this transition.

The Meeting room, Stephen Scown Solicitors, Curzon House, Southernhay, EX1 1RS

Everybody is welcome. Free event, donations for refreshments.

Click here to download the poster - please send this to your friends.

Preferred installers

We have recently completed a process to appoint preferred installers and are delighted to announce that Clean Earth Energy, SunGift Solar, Sol Electrical and Hyde Park Electrical have been appointed.

Click here to read more.
Funding successes

We would like to say a big thank you to The Naturesave Trust and Devon County Council/Regen SW who have recently awarded us with grants of £2,000 and £4,050 respectively. This money will go towards professional advice on our financial model, marketing the share offer, and paying for project management time to develop Solar PV1.

We are currently writing an application for the Urban Community Energy Fund which we hope will provide money to cover legal costs and further project management time.
St Davids Neighbourhood Partnership AGM

We’ll be doing a presentation at the St Davids Neighbourhood Partnership AGM on 21st January at 6:30pm, being held in Exeter Community Centre on the Iron Bridge. This will be a great chance to come get an update from us in person, as well as find out what else is going on in the community.

If you are part of a community organisation, networking group, business, club or society and would like us to come and talk at one of your meetings, please do let us know. We’re always keen to get out and spread the word of what we’re doing

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