Hello,

Your next update from the Coalition for Community Energy (C4CE) is here.

Community energy continues to have a high profile since the huge success of the Community Energy Congress. The Victorian Government has just announced an important new initiative supporting community energy in three regional locations. The media continues to see community energy as popular and newsworthy  – and what a great story it makes, from the $24 million invested in community energy in Australia to-date to the stories coming out of dozens of towns, villages and suburbs around Australia.

Communities are starting to find their rightful place at the centre of the energy transition in this country.

C4CE has a new Steering Group. We only had nine nominations for nine positions, so there was no need for elections. Read on to meet the new team and more.

Nicky & Manny
Secretariat for C4CE

Victorian Community Power Hubs Announcement

The Victorian Government has announced it will provide $110,00 funding over a two year period to establishment three pilot Community Power Hubs in Ballarat, Bendigo and the Latrobe Valley.

The Community Power Hubs will assist the community in accessing the skills and expertise required to develop and deliver community-based renewable energy projects.

The Community Power Hubs will be hosted by a local not-for-profit or social enterprise organisation that works to co-ordinate and facilitate the development and expansion of community energy in each geographic area while helping to build capacity and skills.

See the Sustainability Victoria website for more detail and read this article by Nicky Ison for further insights into these Hubs.  While the application deadline is coming up fast, if there is any way C4CE can assist potential applicants please feel free to get in touch at secretariat@c4ce.net.au.

Meet the new C4CE Steering Group!

Following the great success of Community Energy Congress 2017, C4CE has also appointed its new Steering Group! C4CE thanks all outgoing Steering Group members and looks forward to what comes next with this talented and committed group of community energy leaders.

Meet the 2017 – 2019 C4CE Steering Group team:

Adrian Ford – Surf Coast Energy Group (SCEG)
Formerly a corporate lawyer with strong business development experience in Australia and the UK, Adrian is currently completing a PhD on renewable energy policy at the University of Melbourne. Adrian is an active member of the Surf Coast Energy Group and the Victorian Community Solar Alliance, and brings to strong strategic development, sector collaboration and project management skills to C4CE.

Gavin Ashley – Moreland Energy Foundation (MEFL)
Gavin heads up MEFL’s consultancy operations and takes a lead role in supporting community energy projects, including Zero Net Energy Town (Z-NET) and more recently a 2MW community solar project in Wodonga. Following his first year as a C4CE steering group member, Gavin will continue to bring his own and MEFL’s broader stakeholder relations, communications reach and project delivery roles to further the objectives of C4CE and looks forward to a significant ongoing role in the community energy movement.

Heather Smith – CORENA
Heather is an electrical engineer and has been both an industrial energy efficiency consultant and a climate change policy maker in her career. After many years in state government Heather has moved on to focus on community energy. She is a Churchill Fellow, recently returned from looking at the role of community energy around the world in provoking change and defining each country’s energy transition. Through her increased involvement with C4CE, Heather aims to be at the heart of South Australia’s community energy sector while providing a good state connection to national activities.

Donna Luckman – Alternative Technology Association (ATA)
As CEO of the ATA, Donna brings over 20 years experience working for government, not-for-profit and research organisations, as well as extensive networks in the sustainability and community energy sector. Donna and ATA aim to lend their strong organisational management skills to C4CE, while leveraging ATA’s national membership and communications reach to assist supporting the sector.

Declan Kuch – Pingala
Declan is a research fellow at UNSW who has been working in, researching and writing about energy and climate issues since 2005. Declan also works with Pingala to find host sites and build its community of supporters. Through C4CE, Declan aims to help build a community legal support strategy that will enable relevant, effective, timely advice that avoids the costly fees of corporate practice.

Vikki McLeod – Zero Emissions Noosa
Vikki has 30 years experience in the energy supply industry as an electrical engineer before specialising in energy and climate change policy work across a range of government, industry and community groups including Brisbane City Council, the Australian, Victorian and NT Governments, Senior Adviser to the Leader of Australian Democrats, and Clean Energy Council. Vikki likes to see opportunities rather than barriers and and looks forward to bringing her extensive experience to C4CE.

Taryn Lane – Hepburn Wind
Taryn has been the Community Manager of Australia’s first community-owned cooperative wind farm Hepburn Wind for more than six years part-time, delivering industry best community engagement around wind energy. Taryn conducts research around the emerging community energy sector in Australia and has led or co-authored a range of State, Federal and ARENA funded studies in to community energy. Taryn has been involved with C4CE since it’s 2014 inception, and is the current Chair of C4CE and would like to continue to support this emerging organisation over the coming years.

Tom Nockolds – Community Power Agency
Tom has devoted his professional and volunteering life to community energy since 2013.  He is a founding member of Pingala, where he has played a leading role in developing one of Australia’s pioneering community solar projects. As a member of the team at Community Power Agency, Tom has a comprehensive knowledge of community energy in Australia and has been heavily involved in delivering secretariat services to the C4CE Steering Group meetings and providing administrative services to support the membership and operation of the organisation. Tom brings a combination of practical experience in delivering community energy projects, coupled with a commercial background in the IT and legal industries, and extensive governance experience.

Angela Johnstone – Energy Locals
Angela began her community energy journey as a volunteer at Pingala where she was proud to contribute to the Young Henry’s brewery project (and enabling solar powered beer!). With a background in biofuels and bioplastics, electronic waste recycling, business sector sustainability, Angela now works full time in community energy with ethical retailer Energy Locals. Angela looks forward to bringing her financial modelling and project delivery skills in to the C4CE network and helping to promote collective knowledge sharing across the sector.

Australian community energy news

You might have noticed there’s been a lot of great media coverage of community energy recently. Check it out:

Comprehensive coverage of community energy investment
Climate Media Centre have pulled together data on how much money has been invested into community energy.  Coverage included:

Renewables Roadshow
The Guardian has produced a series of videos and articles showcasing community energy projects across Canberra, New South Wales and Victoria.

Community Energy for Goulburn – DA Approval
Community Energy for Goulburn got their development application approved, check out the great coverage in the Goulburn Post.

Voices of Community Energy
There’s a new podcast in town and it’s all about community energy. There’s some great stories already online, so get in there and listen to the people who’ve had the vision, struggled the struggle and achieved meaningful change in their communities. Please ‘like’ the facebook page or voce.net.au

More Congress Videos

You can find more videos from the Congress on the Outputs Page and also on the C4CE YouTube channel.

This sure beats watching coverage of the federal budget! Top up your inspiration and watch some of these videos today.