Only one new community energy group formed in the UK in 2017 as subsidies went to fossil fuels

So Community Energy England reports in its annual survey. Subsidies for FF are 30x higher than for renewables, including >£3bn in 2017 through the capacity market.

Community energy groups grew by 30 a year until 2015. There are 228 in all, serving 48,000 members. One of the successes is Energise Barnsley, wherein solar panels and batteries have been installed in 321 council homes, municipal buildings and schools, focusing on people at risk of fuel poverty. I am among the investors in that project.

But today setting up a project is risky, with the cost of installing solar or wind paid up-front. Nearly 30% of community energy groups saw projects fail in 2017.

With the government distracted by the fiasco that is Brexit, and still addicted to white elephants on nuclear and shale, it is difficult not to see a catastrophe ahead for energy in the UK. When it happens we can expect the government, in the spirit of our fake-news times, and based on track record, to blame the crisis on the cost of green energy, or some other such falsehood. As ever, I am open to polite opinions pointing out where I am wrong in holding this view.

Image: screenshot from Community Energy England website.

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