Industrial Energy Transformational Fund – £40m of funding to help businesses cut their carbon emissions
Grant schemes looking for projects to move the UK towards zero carbon are like buses at the moment – hot on the heels of announcement of…
As a manager at PKF Francis Clark based in a rural area who is interested in funding and sustainability, my attention was grabbed by the headline “Fund means rural groups can clean up by going green” in the local paper – with the next line in the article being “An MP is urging community groups to go green and cash in.” I investigated further…
The fund is The Rural Community Energy Fund (RCEF), which is a £15 million programme, jointly funded by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS). It supports rural communities in England to develop renewable energy projects which provide economic and social benefits to the community.
RCEF provides support to rural communities in two stages:
Note: it appears the scheme is aimed at feasibility studies etc. as opposed to capital expenditure on an installation.
Who can apply?
The WRAP website defines rural communities and states that the projects that may be supported are ones where the rural community (through an eligible legal entity) are planning a renewable energy project which:
I assume that the WRAP definitions etc. are still valid (as the PR references their site) but note that they do not seem to be administering this element of the funding.
The WRAP website also gives guidance on some of the terminology used:
|Eligible legal entity
|· Community interest company (CIC)
· Industrial provident society (IPS) such as co-operatives
· Parish council
· Registered social landlord
· Development trust
· Faith group
· Solar photo voltaic
· Solar thermal
· Wind turbines
· Ground and air source heat pumps
· Anaerobic digestion, biomass, bio liquids, biogas and bio-CHP
· Low carbon/renewable heat networks
· Gas combined heat and power (CHP) units
|Scale of projects
|· Require planning permission and significant pre-planning development
· Be of a scale to enable repayment of the pre-planning loan plus premium on financial close
· Generate energy for multiple buildings (or export the equivalent to the grid). The fund is not designed for single building installations even when those are community buildings
|Eligibility of consultants
|· A demonstrable track record of experience and/or qualifications in the relevant field
· Professional indemnity insurance of £1,000,000 or more
· Value for money
· A declaration of pecuniary interest
Examples of previous projects
Examples of previous projects helped by RCEF include:
More details and how to apply?
RCEF is being run by five regional Local Energy Hubs. If you would like to register your interest for the scheme, or would like further information, please contact the relevant hub for your area. – see GOV.UK RCEF guidance web page which together with the press release on the GOV.UK site gives more details on the fund.
“A local representative within the relevant Local Energy Hub will be able to provide tailored support on local planning matters.”
I will be sharing the blog with my PKF Francis Clark colleagues who engage with the organisations defined as ‘eligible legal entity’ for them to potentially share with their client base. Also, I will be bringing the scheme to the attention of my colleagues who specialise in the area in the area of Energy & Infrastructure Advisory. – but I suspect they may be already of it!
By Andrew James