Carmarthenshire Energy is a Community Benefit Society founded in 2012 following a year of consultation with communities, businesses and councillors. They aim to support community groups and those suffering from fuel poverty and concerned about energy security and climate change; creating renewable energy projects run for people not profit, with any surplus generated reinvested in the local economy.
The Salem turbine is the biggest community owned renewable energy installation in Wales and income generated will go towards a community benefit fund of £1.3m. Including interest being paid to local shareholders, the overall project is likely to be worth nearer £2m for the county.
The group received support from Welsh Government's Ynni Lleol, its predecessor programme Ynni’r Fro, Renew Wales and project managers Seren Energy. They are currently running a community share offer inviting the public to invest in the scheme.
Chairman Neil Lewis said: “After raising a pleasing £350,000 through the first month-long Share Offer in November, we are now aiming to raise £640,000. As before, there will be a generous return on investment (5.6% IRR) as well as potential tax reliefs with the new Personal Savings Allowance scheme.
The more money we can raise through community shares to cover the cost of the project, the less we have to borrow and more will remain in the community pot. We have set the entry level low at £100 to enable as many people to invest and benefit as possible.”
The Carmarthenshire Energy share offer closes on July 11th 2016. For more details, visit: www.carmarthenshireenergy.org.uk