Tool aims to enhance community energy’s role in pursuit of net zero

A new platform has been launched with the aim of increasing the number of community-owned renewable energy projects in the UK as it looks to achieve its net zero target.

Led by Forum for the Future, PowerPaired is free and provides a matchmaking service, pairing up community energy groups with owners of sites that have the potential for renewable energy generation. The developers noted that one of the biggest barriers facing community groups striving to set up a renewable project is finding a site that can be developed on. The sites most suitable are often owned by private landowners, commercial companies or local authorities with enthusiasm for renewable energy but lacking the time and expertise to explore options themselves. PowerPaired aims to make the process of matching the two parties up “quick and easy”.

There are already over 100 assets on offer through the platform, including some from National Grid and Scottish Power. PowerPaired will also look to signpost users to a range of tools that can support them. This includes highlighting agencies such as Community Energy England and regional BEIS-funded Energy Hubs.

Nicky Conway, Sustainability Manager at National Grid, said: “National Grid believes that community-owned renewable energy is a key part of the puzzle when it comes to empowering consumers to take more control over how their energy is generated and used and reducing carbon emissions. We encourage local community groups to sign up to the PowerPaired platform so we can start to explore new projects together, and asset owners to register their own sites so we can really start seeing more movement in this space.”

Forum for the Future