Community Energy Policy Statement and Local Energy Challenge Fund

Local Energy Scotland has several exciting opportunities to share, following the launch on 18th August of the Scottish Government's Community Energy Policy Statement.

Community Energy Policy Statement

Monday 18th August saw launch of the Community Energy Policy Statement by First Minister Alex Salmond, which sets out the Scottish Government’s record of support for community energy and new ambition for holistic local energy solutions. Members of the public and other interested parties will be asked to put forward their views on the statement during a 12-week consultation period. An overview of current and future policies to place community energy at the heart of local energy systems and ensure communities have the right to share in the benefits of realising the green energy resource around them. 

Local Energy Scotland are pleased to be supporting the community energy sector towards the 2020 500MW target and encourage any interested stakeholders to submit a response to the Policy Statement.

See the Community Energy Policy Statement here.

Local Energy Challenge Fund

Read about the Challenge Fund here.

Announced alongside the Community Energy Policy Statement was the Scottish Government's Local Energy Challenge Fund, an extremely exciting opportunity for local energy in Scotland. The First Minister announced that £20 million will be available to support innovative projects which transform the way Scotland's communities interact with energy - by linking local energy generation with local energy use. Local Energy Scotland will be delivering this fund as part of the CARES programme.

Chris Morris, Local Energy Scotland Project Manager commented: 

"We are thrilled to share news of the Local Energy Challenge Fund, and are looking forward to supporting pioneering projects through the scheme. We will be encouraging partnership and collaborative approaches between organisations including community groups, charities, local authorities, housing associations, universities and businesses."

He continued:

"Groups can apply to receive funding to develop large-scale projects which look to link up energy generation with innovative solutions to using energy locally, creating a low carbon energy economy. The fund is open now and I encourage any interested parties to register an interest with us."

The First Minister said the fund will help reshape how energy is delivered and used in communities throughout the country, confirming Scotland’s position as a global leader in renewables and low carbon development.

Read about the Challenge Fund here.

Overview of CARES Support

In addition to the Policy Statement, a supplementary document has been published by the Scottish Government. This document provides an overview of the support offered through CARES as well as case studies of organisations and projects that have received support.

 This support consists of:

  1.  General Advice and Support
  2. Support for Direct Ownership
  3. Support for Shared Ownership & Investment
  4. Support for Community Benefits
  5. Supporting Infrastructure and Innovation

Local Energy Scotland have been delivering CARES since August 2013 and look forward to continuing to support community groups to engage with renewable energy projects.

See the Overview of CARES Support here.


We are thrilled to share news of the Local Energy Challenge Fund, and are looking forward to supporting pioneering projects through the scheme.