Brighton Energy Co-op’s 

Community Fund  

As well as being part of the city’s largest developer of solar PV (BEC now produces 3% of Brighton’s electricity), BEC members help support the wider engagement of Brighton & Hove on energy and climate issues. See below for some examples. BEC members also vote to allocate cash from our Community Fund to worthwhile projects in the city and our Solar School Education Programme. See more about our Community Fund and who has won awards over the past few years here.

  • We speak at numerous events and conferences locally on the opportunity for reducing carbon emissions and improving fuel poverty and have appeared in local media, TV & radio on the same subject.
  • We’ve provided case studies for wider education on renewable energy to organisations such as the National Energy Foundation.
  • A PHD researcher from Sussex University shadowed us for one year. Her work is widely read by start-up community organisations.
  • We’ve provided consultancy to Brighton & Hove City Council on their renewable energy and energy efficiency strategy, as well as sitting on the City Sustainability Partnership.
  • We were awarded DECC Local Energy Efficiency Fund grants to help make 40 householders’ homes more energy efficient and comfortable.
  • We helped found local community energy organisation Community Energy South.
  • We’ve hosted international delegations from Chile and Japan, and been ambassadors for Brighton through funded visits to Utrecht and Eastern Germany.
  • We’ve inputted into a number of masters and undergraduate projects and provided volunteering and employment opportunities.
  • We also provide ad hoc advice to numerous householders and businesses on renewable energy or energy efficiency solutions.
  • BEC helped set up a Sustainable Energy Working Group to assist the development of joint projects across the city and encourage further education on sustainable solutions – e.g. some of these were being joint bid partners and finalists in a National Lottery ‘Communities Living Sustainably’ bid.
  • We were an advisor to the Eco Technology Show which ran for 4 years in Brighton with around 2500 visitors per year benefitting from 60 free seminars on sustainability issues.
  • BEC helped develop a business plan and helped gain funding for an Environmental Industries umbrella organisation.
  • We were also an advisor to the Local Enterprise Partnership on environmental projects.
  • In 2015 we were awarded a DECC Urban Community Energy Fund grant to develop further renewable energy projects in line with our Objectives.
  • BEC contributed to the Community Energy Coalition.
  • We were awarded a £5K Innovation Voucher to develop the business plan for a community owned Anaerobic Digester.
  • We helped broker potential partnerships or funding bids in Brighton & Hove with B&Q, Siemens, AEA-Ricardo & Cisco.
  • BEC provided a ‘platform’ which has allowed social cohesion around sustainable energy and fuel poverty issues.
  • We have also been recognised for our efforts with a PEA and Community Energy England award.