Brampton and Beyond Energy (BABE) was formed from discussions within the Energy Action Group. It is an independent community-led Industrial and Provident Society, a company within the Co-operative movement which can trade for community benefit. As reported in the Cumberland News (25th July 2014) BABE has been awarded £20,000 by the Rural Community Energy Fund to undertake a feasibility study into the potential in the Brampton area for renewable energy generation from a range of possible sources, including micro-hydropower, solar, wind, biomass, geothermal and anaerobic digestion. An outline project plan is attached (the dates are illustrative).
The advantages of generating renewable energy locally are that it helps reduce reliance on increasingly scarce and costly fossil fuels, it will lower our collective carbon footprint and it will contribute to making Brampton a more economically and environmentally sustainable place for future generations to enjoy.
The Rural Community Energy Fund (RCEF) supports rural communities in England to develop renewable energy projects which deliver economic and social benefits to the community and reduce dependence on fossil fuels. RCEF is delivered by WRAP on behalf of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC).
This September we will be delivering a survey to householders in Brampton so that everyone can have a say in what happens next, and also to give people the opportunity to get actively involved if they wish. The responses will enable us to identify priorities, concerns, potential impacts and suggestions for how these might be overcome. Together with the findings from the technical studies this will help us to identify the most appropriate renewable energy options for the Brampton community, and also what form of community benefit to derive from the income that the project will generate. Copies of the survey may be downloaded from www.babenergy.co.uk.
Provided the community broadly approves, the second phase will be to achieve planning permission for which a second grant will be required. It will then take a further year to raise the capital, build and begin to operate whatever plant has been selected.
BABE’s website at www.babenergy.co.uk contains background information about their origins. BABE has engaged Rural Cumbria Connects to conduct this survey who are a group of professional experts who are already helping two other rural community energy projects In Cumbria at Bootle and Kirby Thore.
About WRAP and RCEF
WRAP’s vision is a world without waste, where resources are used sustainably. WRAP works with businesses and individuals to help them reap the benefits of reducing waste, develop sustainable products and use resources in an efficient way. The Rural Community Energy Fund (RCEF) is a £15 million programme delivered by WRAP and jointly funded by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC). It supports rural communities in England to develop renewable energy projects which provide economic and social benefits to the community