Community energy groups using funds to help vulnerable during pandemic

Scottish Renewables revealed on 26 March that a growing number of community energy groups are repurposing their funding to support vulnerable people during the coronavirus pandemic.

Up to £20mn of community benefit funding is paid by wind farm developers to communities to develop local projects in Scotland every year.

Community Energy Scotland co-owns a 7.5MW wind farm in the Scottish Borders with Berwickshire Housing Association, which provides around £40,000 a year in community funding. But it is now working with a newly established volunteer action group to provide emergency grants to local families in hardship. Foundation Scotland, which administers around 60 community benefit funds, says it is in conversation with community representatives of around 20 funds to provide similar aid.

Community Energy Scotland Development Manager Jamie Adam said: “We have been humbled by the reaction of local communities to the coronavirus emergency, and are delighted to be able to help, if only in a small way.”

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