CLEAN Energy for Eternity (CEFE) was able to present two ‘good news’ stories at the inaugural Community Energy Congress held in Canberra June 16-17.
The congress was inspired by CEFE’s story of the Tathra IMAGINE solar farm and CEFE’s recently launched social enterprise ClearSky Solar Investments Ltd which provides opportunity for community members to invest in solar installations on commercial property.
The congress brought together community groups from around the country sharing a passion to roll out local solar and wind energy projects.
There are many different models being worked on and many projects in the pipeline.
It was a great networking opportunity for the sector with each group sharing their aspirations, business models, legal structures and progress to date.
As well as keynotes describing the very significant community energy sector in Germany and Scotland and breakout sessions covering what support is available to local community energy groups, the congress launched a series of initiatives to implement a National Community Energy Strategy, each with a team leader and group of enthusiasts who will report back on their achievements in six-nine months’ time.
The congress was heartened by the evident genuine commitment to community energy NSW Minister for Environment and Heritage Rob Stokes.
Mr Stokes announced a further round of community energy grant funding for 2015 and confirmed his government’s strong representations to the Abbott government that the Renewable Energy Target should remain as it is.