A community energy organisation has been launched, aiming to bring local ownership to the proposed new wind farm near Whitchurch.

Hampshire Energy Group has been set up by volunteers and is in negotiations with EDF Energy Renewables to agree a 10% community ownership of the wind farm.


Community benefits

Martin Heath, a HEG spokesman says:

“We want to ensure that our community benefits. This is a great opportunity for local people to take an ownership stake in what will be one of Hampshire’s largest renewable energy developments.”

They say this will ensure some financial benefits remain in this country rather than “the majority of money going straight out of the country into the pockets of international firms” as can be the case. HEG intends to become a ‘co-operative’ based on many successful community energy ownership schemes in the UK.
Martin adds:

“Bullington Cross is one of the most suitable sites in Hampshire, 3km from the nearest village, not in a national park or in an area of outstanding natural beauty and the land can still be used for farming. And it is one of the windiest places in Hampshire”.

Investing back into the community
The proposed co-operative will allow local people to invest in the wind farm and to receive a fair return. Additional money made by the co-op will be invested back into the local community. All members of the co-op will be able to vote on how such funds will be used.
It is envisaged that this will help organisations such as local schools, churches and voluntary groups to install free renewable energy systems, as well as providing more efficient power and heat to the local community.

From fossil fuel to renewable energy
HEG has been formed with the aim of speeding up the transition of energy generation away from fossil fuels and towards sources such as solar, wind, water and biomass, and aims to maximise co-operative and community ownership and the benefits which come from this for the good of local people.

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Hampshire Energy Group has been set up by volunteers from Winchester Action on Climate Change, and the Andover and Basingstoke Transition Networks.
See: HAMPSHIRE ENERGY GROUP

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