Bristol Energy Network is an umbrella organisation for individuals and community groups with an interest in energy in Bristol and the surrounding area.
BEN members are working to create a new energy system that works for us all.
Our vision is for a city where everyone has access to, and can afford, the energy they need. Our energy will be provided by clean, green technologies, such as solar and wind, with a significant amount coming from community-owned projects which will empower communities and support the local economy.
We believe that to build an energy system that works for everyone, everyone must be involved in building it. We are actively working to include all Bristol communities in our work and to support them to run their own energy projects.
What do we do?
BEN has over twenty members (groups and individuals) involved in many different energy projects, including:
- Assisting people struggling to pay their fuel bills by advising them on how to deal with debts to energy companies, finding the cheapest energy provider for their needs and accessing grants;
- Advising people and community organisations on how to reduce their energy use, both by changing their behaviour (eg not boiling more water than needed) and ensuring homes and community buildings are more energy efficient (eg insulation);
- Supporting the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy, including raising money for and installing community-owned renewable energy projects (eg installing solar panels on community buildings);
- Education, campaigning and lobbying to push for the social and political change needed to create a fair and sustainable energy system.
BEN supports its members by:
- Sharing news and information through our newsletter, website and social media
- Acting as a conduit between members and other organisations
- Helping members share resources and ideas through regular meetings
- Building capacity through training, advice and support
- Community outreach to engage a wider range of people and groups in the network