Westmill Solar Co-operative is the UK’s first community-owned solar park. The 5MW solar park has now been operating under community ownership for 7 years. It creates enough clean, renewable energy to power around 1,400 homes and prevent around 1,500 tonnes of harmful CO2 emissions from entering the atmosphere every year.
Westmill Solar sells the power it generates to Co-operative Energy and a proportion of its surplus is allocated to Westmill Solar’s community fund. More than £200,000 has already been provided to various causes, including the funding of energy audits for local community buildings, the development of an educational and schools visits programme, and a contribution towards a new visitors’ centre in Highworth. Westmill Solar hopes to contribute more than £2 million to its community fund over the next 15 years to directly benefit many more local and environmental causes.
The co-operative is also committed to education and research, with an extensive onsite visitor programme, and campaigns about the important role that community energy plays in tackling climate change. Westmill Solar works closely with organisations like the Westmill Sustainable Energy Trust (WeSET) and Low Carbon Hub locally and was a founder member of Community Energy England which promotes community-owned renewable energy nationally.
To find out more about Westmill Solar and how you can get involved please visit our website www.westmillsolar.coop