Wednesday 14 November
12.00pm – 9.00pm
Western Power Distribution (WPD), Plymouth Energy Community (PEC) and ourselves held this energy jamboree to celebrate the achievements of community energy projects and look at ways to make our energy system work better for us. We explored how our energy system is changing and the opportunities for communities to innovate and collaborate with network operators.
Community energy, the next generation
As we head along the road to a smarter, more decentralised energy system, it is often easy to forget about the achievements and challenges that we have faced along the way. This event series is all about celebrating those achievements and recognising their benefits and learnings as we continue to look to the future of innovation and collaboration.
We heard from community energy groups, like you, who have been through the trials and successes of recent projects and sharing learning from their endeavours. Speakers for the day included:
- Peter Crone, South Dartmoor Community Energy and ZCM
- Kate Royston, Tamar Energy Community
- Alistair MacPherson, Plymouth Energy Community
- Ricky Duke, Western Power Distribution
We then be asked what’s next? What does the future hold for community energy and how can we make the most of the opportunities that are available to us? We have seen new developments in electric vehicles, local supply, flexibility markets, and battery storage. All of these provide exciting opportunities for new knowledge, collaboration, innovation and greater engagement.
Community energy can play a fundamental role in our future decentralised energy system. These events are about getting inspired by other community groups, learning together, getting involved with the changes in our energy system and building new networks to help you achieve the goals you set out for your community energy groups.
You can view the presentations from the day below:
Plymouth is one of the UK leaders in both the social enterprise and community energy movements. As part of Plymouth’s Social Enterprise Festival, Plymouth Energy Community invited you to ‘Powering Change’, showcasing how communities can help power the change urgently needed to tackle some of the most pressing social and environmental challenges of our time.
Plymouth Energy Community and PEC Renewables welcomed their members to their AGM whilst other attendees refreshed and got ready for the unique evening ahead.
They were inspired with an evening exploring the art of the possible!
They heard Plymouth Energy Community’s chief executive, Alistair Macpherson talk about the work of the Energy Team; changing lives in Plymouth.
They were enthralled as the Sustainable Earth Institute’s Professor Iain Stewart explained how to overcome the challenge of communicating colossal global problems whilst encouraging grassroots action.
Dr Poorna Gunasekera showed how every individual has the capacity to change the world and make it a better place, introducing the Megareach Global Volunteering Network and his experience as a PEC Pal.
Matt Winning, comedian and environmental economist, had us in stitches as he combined comedy and science in an attempt to save the planet.
And lastly, a truly inspirational leader of social change, Baron John Bird MBE, founder of The Big Issue, shared how to dismantle poverty by creating opportunity and motivated us all to empower our community to make change happen.