Community Energy England releases sectoral report
Over half of community energy practitioners feel negatively about what the future holds in store for the sector, following from 2018 which was the worst year on record. However, almost a quarter of practitioners reported optimism around emerging opportunities.
Community Energy England’s State of the Sector 2019 revealed massive drops in investment and capacity growth across the 275 existing community energy companies. This was blamed on the end of a supportive subsidy environment and a lack of government clarity on the future. This also lead to a dramatic decrease of 81% in the number of new community energy organisations established in 2018.
Total installation of new community energy capacity was down 81% between 2016 and 2018, bringing total community energy capacity to 168MW.
These drops were widely attributed to the end of the feed-in-tariff. While it is affecting morale in the community energy sector, there is also hope that organisations can take advantage of emerging opportunities.
Over 72% of the 275 community energy organistations reported they still have plans for activities in 2019, with many looking to a range of new opportunities around energy storage, flexibility services and even person to person energy trading.