SSE delivers £4.5million boost to community projects

 

Glenluce Primary School: Three vertical-axis wind turbines were installed at the Dumfries and Galloway school, providing valuable community income
Glenluce Primary School: Three vertical-axis wind turbines were installed at the Dumfries and Galloway school, providing valuable community income

More than 360 not for profit groups have benefitted from community investment funds created through SSE’s onshore wind and hydro developments totalled over £4.5m in the last financial year, a new report has shown.

Providing support for small businesses and not-for-profit groups across Britain – often in some of the country’s most fragile rural areas – the full impact of the renewable energy funds is detailed in SSE’s first community investment annual review.

The report finds that for every £ awarded by SSE through its renewable energy funds, recipients sourced an additional £2 in match-funding from other sources.Award decisions on local funds were taken by independent community panels.

SSE Chief Executive, Alistair Phillips-Davies said:“ SSE is a business that provides the energy people need. To do this, we must work with communities as a responsible neighbour, going beyond the minimum and becoming an active contributor in the places we operate.

“SSE is a responsible developer and has played a large part in setting the standard for community investment in the renewable energy industry.  With the ongoing help of our panel members I look forward to seeing our funding create jobs, enhance facilities and enable community regeneration for decades to come.”

The largest award was made to Biggar Museum Trust, which received £650,000 from the Clyde wind farm fund towards the construction of a new visitor centre. Other notable awards include a £400,000 grant to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) studies across Highland schools and a £75,000 grant to enable the community buy-out of Aberfeldy town hall in Perthshire.

Over £1million in grants went to skills and employment projects, including a £266,902 award to the Routes to Inclusion employment programme in South Lanarkshire and over £110,000 to three local apprenticeship schemes operating in the Great Glen, the Cairngorms National Park and Sutherland.

All of SSE’s new onshore wind farms receive a community investment fund of £5,000 per megawatt of installed capacity, comprising:

·        £2,500 per megawatt for local community projects; and
·        £2,500 per megawatt for a regional fund, titled the Sustainable Development Fund. 

In England, wind farms at Keadby and Tilbury generated a funding pot of £100,000 during the period.

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