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DECC launch £10m community fund

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Energy secretary Ed Davey has unveiled £10m fund to boost the deployment of community renewable energy projects.

The Urban Community Energy Fund will give community groups in England the opportunity to bid for grants of up to £20,000, or loans of up to £130,000 to help kick-start their projects.

Energy secretary Ed Davey said: “I want to give more people the power to generate their own electricity and by supporting community energy projects we can – helping them drive down their energy bills at the same time.

“That’s why we’ve pledged £10 million, so communities can play their part in generating renewable power at a local level. This is all about investing in renewable energy sources, creating jobs and changing the way renewable energy is developed in the UK.”

Community projects will also get greater support under the Feed-in Tariff. Changes include:

– For the first time, registered charities will be entitled to the same benefits as other community groups;

– Two community projects (or one community project and one commercial project), each up to 5MW, will now be able to share a single grid connection and receive separate Feed-in Tariffs;

– The FIT will now be guaranteed for an extra six months – giving communities more time to get their project up and running.