Egni Coop has announced the completion of a huge rooftop solar array at Caerleon Comprehensive. The school is adjacent to the famous Roman fortress, baths and amphitheatre. The school and pupils were very keen to reduce its carbon footprint and joined in the partnership programme between Newport City Council and Egni which has installed solar across the borough.
Rosie Gillam, Egni Director said, “The solar array is rated at 78 kW and has been generating really well in this sunny weather. The school staff were so helpful during the installation which went ahead during all the Covis-19 restrictions and whilst they were also preparing for the children to return to school in September. We’d also like to thank our installers, Joju Solar, who have really helped us demonstrate that Wales is leading the Green Recovery at this critical time in the climate emergency. We have now installed over 3MW across Wales, the largest rollout of rooftop solar in Welsh history. And just in case you don’t know what else the Romans did (and didn’t do) for us, here’s a link to the famous Monty Python sketch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7tvauOJMHo!
Cllr. Deb Davies, Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development, said: The council is determined to take a lead on tackling the climate crisis and by working with Egni Co-op we have already achieved a 20-fold increase in the amount of renewable energy installed on our buildings. This is a big step towards our ambition of becoming carbon neutral by 2030.”
Dr Chris Jardine, Joju Solar’s Technical Director explained “Community energy is a way of delivering carbon reductions at serious scale, whilst simultaneously engaging with the local community. A sustainable energy transition needs to built from the bottom-up in this way, if it is to be successful. Egni’s scheme in Newport is a perfect example of what can be achieved.”
Egni is also promoting a specialist education programme highlighting the benefits and use of solar panels, renewable energy and the business model of co-operatives.
The co-op is also part of an EU project to support co-op entrepreneurship in schools. http://youcoope.eu/
Egni will be working with Newport City Council in this project and use the materials produced as part of its education pack in the city’s schools. All schools taking part also get £500 of shares in Egni Coop to help increase understanding of the cooperative business model amongst young people.
Councillor Gail Giles, the council’s cabinet member for education and skills said: “We are delighted by the positive way our school pupils and staff are engaging with this ambitious project.”