We need to greatly accelerate the deployment of renewable energy at scale in order to address the combined factors of climate change, energy security, and social justice. This can be achieved by:
- obtaining investment from capital markets and other sources on the best possible terms, for the benefit of the community
- establishing a profit sharing programme to facilitate local stakeholders in utilising this financial resource effectively to build local resilience with regard to local emissions, energy security, local economic viability and social cohesion (e.g. addressing fuel poverty issues and developing behaviour-change initiatives)
- other outcomes include increasing job opportunities at the local level and support for social enterprises to address wider issues relating to creating sustainable, socially just local economies
Empower Community Management is a social enterprise that has been developed in consultation and collaboration with a broad range of private, public, community and stakeholder organisations.
Empower Community Management’s ongoing role is the overall management of solar PV for social housing, as well as driving growth through the origination and due diligence of additional projects. Initially these are wholly focused on solar PV projects, but with scope for further distributed energy projects, Renewable Heat Incentive and Energy Efficiency initiatives.
The Management Team brings a breadth of relevant experience in business management, business start-ups and associated systems, information technology, UK Energy and large infrastructure development, having held executive management positions in a number of energy and infrastructure related businesses, as well as having participated in a number of positions in renewable energy-related bodies such as the Sustainable Development Commission and Low Carbon Communities Network.
During 2011, Empower Community Management structured and arranged a unique, socially beneficial UK pension fund investment of up to £175m for eight social housing projects across the UK to fund Feed-in Tariff-backed solar photovoltaic arrays on 22,000 social homes. Due to sudden policy changes this deal was unable to close, but a number of projects have since been delivered, with several thousand social and private residential solar installations completed and, most recently, two 5MW CIC-based solar parks added to the portfolio.