Swansea schools welcome in a solar-powered New Year!

Two more Swansea schools have completed large solar panel installs with Egni Co-op. A 100kW system was fitted on Morriston Comprehensive just before Christmas, and another 100kW has been completed on Cefn Hengoed Comprehensive in the first week of January.

Andrea Lewis, the council’s joint deputy leader and cabinet member for homes, energy and service transformation, said: “This is a positive way in which to welcome the new year. We are delighted with this increase in clean green power at our schools in Swansea.  

“The council has just published its Charter on Climate Action as a visible public reminder that we aim to become net zero carbon by 2030 – and aim to make the city net zero by 2050. I thank everyone involved for moving rapidly to take action in response to our climate emergency declaration.”

Jen Rayner, the council’s cabinet member for education improvement, learning and skills said: “The cost of these solar installations was funded by Egni Co-op and all surpluses will be spent on education projects so it’s a very good partnership approach for the council.

“The council is determined to take a lead on tackling the climate crisis and by working with Egni Co-op, we want to increase in the amount of renewable energy installed on our buildings.”

Cefn Hengoed Comprehensive

More than 500 kW of rooftop solar has now been installed by Egni on Swansea schools – at Pentrehafod, Gowerton, Pontardulais, Morriston and Cefn Hengoed Comprehensives, and Portmead and Glyncollen primary schools. Swansea Council was the first in Wales to partner with a coop to install 360kW of solar through the award-winning Swansea Community Energy Co-op (SCEES) https://www.swanseacommunityenergy.org.uk . Egni has followed in their footsteps and cooperative power is now aiming to deliver more than 1000kW of solar by the spring in Swansea. 

Morriston Comprehensive

Egni co-director, Rosie Gillam said “We’d like to thank the schools and council staff who’ve made these installs possible in such trying circumstances, and also our installer, Ice Solar, who’ve worked hard. We are really pleased that other Swansea schools are coming forward, keen to take part in the programme.”

Swansea Council is working in collaboration with Egni Co-op and the Welsh Government Energy Service to help the authority in its aims to become a carbon neutral by 2030.

Most of the electricity generated will be used at the schools, cutting carbon emissions from the schools by about 3,200 t/CO2e over the next 20 years.

Pentrehafod Comprehensive

Egni Co-op is a community organisation which funds and manages PV installations in Wales. The solar panels in Swansea have been funded by Egni’s ongoing co-op share offer which has raised £2.2m to date and has recently raised its target to £3m. The rollout was supported by Welsh Government Energy Service who provided dedicated development manager time to the Council.

Jim Cardy, senior manager for Welsh Government Energy Service said, “This project is a great example of a social enterprise working closely with a local authority partner in Wales to tackle the climate emergency. We’re pleased to have assisted Swansea Council with technical support and grant funding to progress this rollout.”

Egni Coop

Egni Co-op is a community organisation which funds and manages PV installations in Wales. It was set up by Awel Aman Tawe (AAT), a community energy charity which has been operating for 20 years. Our prime drivers are tackling climate change and engaging people in energy.

Here’s a recent film made by double BAFTA Cymru winner, Mike Harrison about the largest rooftop solar project in Wales on the Geraint Thomas National Velodrome in Newport https://youtu.be/ZC80dcRmla0

Egni has now raised £2.8m from a community share offer from over 1,000 people and organisations. We also secured a £2.12m loan from the Development Bank of Wales to fund the installs which are ongoing.  This is the biggest rollout of rooftop solar in Welsh history www.egni.coop

Egni has installed nearly 4MWp on 83 sites in Wales which:

The team behind Egni Co-op have also delivered the award-winning Awel Co-op, a 4.7MW community wind farm which was commissioned in Jan 2017. It was funded by a £5.25m loan from Triodos Bank and a £3m community share offer www.awel.coop.

Egni Co-op won Outstanding Renewable Energy Project in an award sponsored by Welsh Government in December 2019 (https://egni.co-op/egni-co-op-earns-a-place-in-the-sun-at-wales-sustainability-academy-awards/) & Awel Aman Tawe was recognised as Environmental Organisation of the Year in the Social Enterprise UK Awards –  https://www.socialenterprise.org.uk/winners-of-the-uk-social-enterprise-awards-2019/

For further details of Egni, please contact Dan McCallum 07590 848818

About Welsh Government Energy Service

The Welsh Government Energy Service provides free technical, commercial and procurement support to develop energy efficiency and renewable energy projects and has supported Egni. The energy service helps with financial planning and funding, for example interest free loans and grants.

Email: enquiries@energyservice.wales

Twitter: @_energyservice | @_gwasanaethynni

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