The other day when I blogged about solar farms in Cornwall the independent Cornwall Councillor Andrew Wallis made a comment that "it is a shame having hundreds of the farms in Cornwall will not make electricity cheaper for the people of Cornwall." Indeed this is a very valid point, what is the benefit for a community to have a solar farm or wind farm built in their community? Perhaps a very good answer to this question (and solution to this problem) has been proposed by the people of the North Cornish town of Wadebridge. Forming the Wadebridge Renewable Energy Network (WREN), they seek for the community to build renewable energy technologies for the benefit of the same community. By reducing the carbon output of the town and raising £300,000+ annualy for the Wadebridge Community Trust Fund.
Now this is a very inspiring, regardless of the energy aspects it is very encouraging to see a community coming together like this in a collective way for the common good. Also this organic approach of the community deciding it's own destiny rather than an external company and/or governmental authority imposing ideas ought to negate or at least lessen local opposition to proposed developments. As will the smaller developments needed unlike some of the larger planned wind and solar farms which have caused concern. I very much wish the WREN project well and do hope that other parts of Cornwall and beyond follow their path. So If anyone forms a Penzance equivalent do let me know.
I don't feel I have done WREN any justice in this blog so please do visit their excellent website for more info: http://www.wren.uk.com/, there are lots of explanations and ideas, how to support their campaign and a whole host of links to their Twitter, Facebook and You Tube pages.
The Wadebridge Renewable Energy Network will be featured on tonight's BBC Countryfile 20:00 (19/6)