Green energy projects on the island of Eigg and in Orkney are among four initiatives in Scotland to share funding of almost £400,000 from Centrica.
The cash comes from the utilities firm’s Energy for Tomorrow social impact fund for schemes that can deliver affordable, accessible and sustainable energy solutions to help tackle climate change.
Eigg Trading will receive money over two years to contribute to the redevelopment of the community hub, which aims to help the Inner Hebridean island achieve net-zero by 2030.
The hub’s “eco-renovation” will include the installation of a biomass boilers and solar thermal panels, replacing a system that uses around 880 gallons of heating oil each year.
The project will also create a number of job opportunities and support nine community facilities on Eigg.
Eigg Trading director, Stuart Fergusson, said: “Support from Centrica’s Energy for Tomorrow’s allows us to move towards our carbon net-zero goal faster.
“It will help create a new gateway building on Eigg’s main pier. An Laimhrig will be powered by renewables and incorporate new energy-saving and monitoring technologies that showcase Eigg’s net-zero ambitions to the world, demonstrating that no matter how small you are, you can make a huge difference.”
Cash will help heat pumps initiative in islands
Inverness-based Community Energy Scotland (CES) will also receive funding over two years for its Making Heat Pumps Work project.
It will enable the organisation to offer home visits or online consultations to householders in Orkney to help determine the best ways of decarbonising their heating.
CES chief executive, Janet Foggie, said: “Community Energy Scotland are delighted to have this opportunity to work with Energy for Tomorrow on a project designed to get the best out of heat pumps as climate change reduction solutions for some of Britain’s most carbon-intensive homes in remote and rural locations on the Orkney Isles.
“Together, we are dedicated to ensuring that dignity, inclusion and heat are all combined in a project to resolve some of the technical issues around getting the most out of a heat pump while also supporting homeowners and the local community in understanding the need for carbon-neutral heating as we aim for net-zero.”
Also receiving funding are Energy Sparks, an online energy analysis and education tool designed to help schools reduce their carbon footprint, and Fife-based charity Brag Enterprises, which offers employability skills, advice to small businesses and a food pantry service for families in poverty.
Chris O’Shea, group chief executive at Centrica, said: “Tackling climate change is a job that requires everyone to work together, with each of us doing our bit to bring solutions both big and small to the table.
“The Energy for Tomorrow funding that has been awarded to four projects in Scotland will help organisations that are working at the heart of communities to scale up their ideas and initiatives to make a real difference in people’s lives so that we can continue to push for a sustainable future for all.”