Wadebridge Renewable Energy Network (WREN)
WREN’s initial objective was to develop a solar PV portfolio as a core asset, offering ‘zero cost’ rooftop PV to local residents, businesses and community groups unable to afford their own systems, and turn the local energy economy from an individual cost to a collective asset.
Thanks to funding from Energyfund Cornwall, plus additional funding from NatureSave, the company installed their planned 100kW ground mount system at Nanstallon, but were unable to proceed with their rooftop PV plans for individuals due to regulation changes making them unviable.
With confirmation of the Energyfund grant, WREN have also been able to negotiate and agree a 20-year purchase power agreement with South West Water, secure capital finance from The Low Carbon Society and register Wadebridge Energy Company as a community benefit society, in addition to generating a 3% gross income from the array as a community fund.
The group has now widened the project scope to include the purchase of a wind generating asset which, when combined with the installed PV, will offer greater outputs, carbon savings, community benefits and investment opportunities.
WREN are also looking at ways of extracting further value from the electricity generated through enhanced PPA values via projects that shift demand, add storage or extricate value from the current supply system.