This page provides information about grant funding for
community energy projects. Although grant funding is becoming more difficult to
access for energy projects a number of schemes and funds are still available.
The information below provides links to the main support schemes for community
energy, followed by links to online funding guides and general information on
- Anyone planning a community energy project
- Local authorities
- Joint venture renewable energy projects involving communities
- National Grant schemes
There are currently support schemes for community renewable energy in England, Wales and Scotland. These are:
Rural Community Energy Fund (Relaunched during the Community Energy Fortnight 2019) The Rural Community Energy Fund is currently open for applications. In its new format, community energy organisations can apply for grants of up to £40,000 to assess the feasibility of community-led renewable energy projects. Follow on grants of up to £100,000 are available to support the more ambitious projects gain planning consent and get them ready to attract investment.The deadline for the first round is 23rd August, further rounds will be run quarterly with the next one in November.
The fund is being administered by the Local Energy Team on behalf of BEIS and DEFRA. The Energy Hub is a new BEIS funded team whose role is to work with local authorities, LEPs and community energy groups to accelerate the delivery of local energy schemes. To register your interest and to receive an application pack please email your local energy hub. You can find that information here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/rural-community-energy-fund
For more information about RCEF, see this presentation and this webpage.
The Community And Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES) provides support from expert development officers, early stage development grants and development loans for community renewable energy projects in Wales. It also has a challenge fund to support local energy economy approaches to energy generation and consumption. Details are available here
The Climate Challenge Fund provides funding for community-led projects that are tackling climate change (including energy efficiency and behaviour change projects). Details are available here
The following are online sources of information on grant funding for community energy projects of all types. These include general advice on funding community energy projects as well as links to sources of grant funding:
Community Energy England keeps a page of current funding opportunities.
"The source" from CSE has a page on financing your project.
FCS Associates have developed a grants finder map, which may help community groups find the right regional opportunity.
The Energy Saving Trust has a page on funding and financing
community energy projects.
The 'Ace for Communities' website from the National Energy Foundation has a section on 'funding from external source' that includes information on grants.
The Sustainable Business Partnership CIC has a page on grant schemes for Sussex or the South East- based organisations.
East Sussex County Council produce a monthly guide to grant and funding programmes for charities, social enterprises and voluntary and community groups.
For inspiration from abroad, there are series of case studies from Denmark, Germany and the UK on cost and financing aspects of community renewable energy projects.