Edinburgh solar co-op re-opens its community benefit scheme

The co-op allocates part of the profits from its rooftop solar installations to projects that benefit people in the city

Edinburgh Community Solar Co-op has re-opened its benefit scheme to applications for grant funding from community focused organisations in the city.

The energy co-op raises capital from the public to place solar panel installations on City of Edinburgh Council buildings (schools, leisure centres and other council owned buildings). As well as paying annual returns to investors, it allocates part of the profits to community causes that benefit the people of Edinburgh.

In the latest round of this community funding, applicants can apply for a minimum of £1,000 and a maximum of £5,000. Eligible organisations can apply for the full cost of a project or a smaller contribution to a larger project. The average grant is likely to be in the region of £1,500.

Funds for larger projects will not be released until the applicant can demonstrate that they have the remainder of the funds in place.

Applications are now open with a closing date of 30 June 2022.

Eligible organisations include schools and leisure centres, sports clubs, registered charities or community organisations with a focus on: children and young people; the environment and sustainability; and outdoor education.

Suitable projects would focus on:

  • Environment/sustainability education
  • Environmental improvements to buildings used by communities
  • Health, wellbeing and inclusion (for example community gardens, healthy eating programmes, or improved access to facilities for people with additional mobility needs)  
  • Small-scale renewables/activities that reduce carbon
  • Initiatives that address fuel poverty.

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