• Wiltshire Wildlife

December 2019 Update

Happy Christmas and best wishes for the New Year to all our members.


Much has changed during 2019 and much remains the same. We have had a reasonable summer and a dull autumn and overall we have generated 5.8 gWh of electricity, the equivalent of the energy used by about 250 homes in a year.


As your Board, our primary focus, of course, has been on the efficient production of energy from our solar arrays so that as well as producing clean energy we can also create returns for our Community Fund and our members’ investment.


We are also ensuring that our land management improves biodiversity. This year we have installed solar beehives at Chelworth- next year we will investigate traditional hives at Braydon Manor. Newts have been spotted at our Chelworth pond, we hope to create a pond on the other site and will enjoy seeing what wildlife emerges to enjoy it. You can read about how you can build a pond in your garden to make up for the nationwide loss of ponds as habitats here.


Meanwhile the wider world is changing (and I’m not just talking about the election). World wide consciousness is increasing about the impact of raised levels of Carbon Dioxide on climate change. Both science and people’s lives are indicating that the effects of climate change are already here, with some fearful that we are very close to tipping points which will further accelerate climate change and degrade our ecosystems.


While Extinction Rebellions movement may well have brought new light to the issue of climate chaos, WWCE members are well tuned into the issues raised by our changing climate and its impact on wildlife. Our members have been aware for years of the importance of increasing sustainability, reducing waste and the importance of green energy to keep within planetary limits.


You can also read a version of this newsletter with images here.


Community Fund increases by £10,000

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The WWCE Community Fund has just had an increase of £10,000 to its core fund thanks to the generosity of WWCE members. This was approved at the WWCE AGM earlier this year and means that more organisations will be able to benefit from the financial support the fund can offer.

There has been a push on social media, local radio and through local voluntary sector networks to promote WWCE Community Fund across Wiltshire and Swindon and this has resulted in an increase of applications from a broader range of organisations. It is anticipated that this year we will be able to allocate all of the Community Funds income to groups and charities with projects to reduce carbon emissions and increase sustainability. If you are interested in applying or finding out more information about the fund please click here.


Power to sell energy to members

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We support the campaign by Power for People for a Local Electricity Bill which aims to speed up the transition away from fossil fuels by making community-scale renewable energy projects more financially viable. The bill has the support of 115 current MPs and they hope to introduce it in the next parliamentary session. Go to their website to write to your MP to ask them to support this initiative.


Their campaign has been backed by over eighty community energy organisations across England Wales and Scotland as well as by Friends of the Earth, the RSPB and Greenpeace, Triodos Bank and Electricity North West.


Currently many community energy groups want to sell their energy directly to local members and residents but find it difficult to make it a viable proposition. The Local Electricity Bill helps by making the costs and bureaucracy of becoming a local licenced energy supplier proportionate to the scale of the group's supply operation.


As a result, small scale projects looking to supply energy to their local community would face a much smaller cost and admin burden than a national supplier. This would allow small-scale renewable energy projects to spring up all over the UK. We hope this would see new local jobs, more resilient local economies and much faster deployment of renewable energy.



Wiltshire Climate

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Wiltshire Council agreed in February to seek to make the County carbon neutral by 2030. They have set up 6 task groups;- Renewable Energy, Planning, Waste, Transport and Air Quality, Land use, Business and industry- to make recommendations to the Council’s forward strategy and business plans. They have started to review the Council’s own 138 buildings including a plan to replace” as much as possible of the …energy used within a building with energy from a renewably generated source rather than grid energy or gas..” Papers presented to the Cabinet on the 8th October reveal a ambitious and far reaching plans.

Many Town Councils have also adopted carbon neutral targets. Zero Chippenham is a voluntary group dedicated to dedicated to reducing carbon, waste and water to have zero impact on our planet.


Performance

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In the three months to December, Wiltshire Wildlife Community Energy generated 990 mWh, about 83 mWh more than projected and in keeping with seasonal expectations.


Salisbury's first ever community share offer is now open to applications. The group are paying 4.5% from April 2020 if targets are met, to put solar panels on seven sites locally. The sites include Wiltshire College (Salisbury) and the Cathedral Cloisters, subject to all consents and permissions.

You can find the main share offer brochure (Schools' Energy Co-op) here. The Salisbury Supplement, which describes the sites, is here. The online application form is here


There is limited time to apply: the offer closes on 15th December.



Need to make changes to contact or bank details?

Any changes to your contact or bank details need to be sent to Neville Registrars, who administer the register of members/shareholders. Please could you send an email to them at: info@nevilleregistrars.co.uk


They need the detail change instruction to come with a signature of the member. This can be a scan/photo of a letter or an email with a signature attached. Alternatively, you can post your instruction to:

Wiltshire Wildlife Community Energy Ltd, Neville Registrars, Neville House, Steelpark Rd, Halesowen B62 8HD

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