MEDIA RELEASE

Groundbreaking schemes honoured at South West Green Energy Awards

21 November 2012

Westcountry’s inspiring examples of renewable energy take top honours
Last night (20 November), the south west’s green energy industry gathered at a glittering awards’ ceremony in Bath to showcase and celebrate the companies, projects and individuals that are at the forefront of the region’s growing renewable energy industry.

More than 130 companies entered the ninth annual South West Green Energy Awards, organised by sustainable energy champions Regen SW. But last night it was all about the finalists, as six category winners were announced by awards’ host Colin Skellet OBE, chairman of the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership.
 

The six category winners

The six category winners which represent the very best examples of sustainable energy in the south west were;

BEST BUSINESS INNOVATION
FaB Test (Falmouth, Cornwall)

Lead judge: Peter Madden, leader of Forum for the Future (sponsored by EcoBuild)

BEST COMMUNITY INITIATIVE
Bath and West Community Energy

Lead judge: Dr Stephen Bird, SW Water operations director (sponsored by The Landmark Practice)

BEST RENEWABLE ENERGY SCHEME
Langage Farm (Smithaleigh, Devon)

Lead judge: Alastair Gill, head of offshore development, RWE npower renewable (sponsored by The Crown Estate)

INSTALLER OR SUPPLIER OF THE YEAR
Solarsense (Backwell, Bristol)

Lead judge: James Vaccaro, Triodos Bank (sponsored by YouGen)

MOST PROACTIVE PUBLIC SECTOR BODY
Exeter and East Devon Growth Point

Lead judge: Lord Robin Teverson

SW SUSTAINABLE ENERGY CHAMPION
Steve Edmunds (Glastonbury, Somerset)

Lead judge: Tim Smit chief executive, Eden Project (sponsored by Rudge Renewables)

“Since we launched the awards in 2004 we have seen exceptional growth in the south west sustainable energy industry,” said Merlin Hyman, chief executive of Regen SW, which organises the awards. “From a fledgling industry in nine years ago, we now have world-leading renewable energy companies in the south west and a thriving industry that currently employs more than 10,000 people and has the potential to provide employment for 30,000 by 2020.”

“All of our finalists are exemplars in their field and leading the UK’s renewable energy drive. The high-quality work they carry out shows just how quickly the sustainable energy sector is developing in the south west and it demonstrates what a strong position the region is in."

The winners were chosen from a high-quality shortlist of entrants from across the region by an independent panel of judges (see above) who have expert knowledge in sustainable energy.
 

The winners: project details

BEST BUSINESS INNOVATION
FaB Test (Falmouth, Cornwall)

FaB Test is a nursery wave energy test facility, situated within Falmouth harbour. The scheme enables wave energy device developers to test components, concepts or full scale renewable energy devices. It is an important step forward for the south west marine renewables’ sector.

BEST COMMUNITY INITIATIVE
Bath and West Community Energy

Bath and West Community Energy (BWCE) is a Community Benefit Society. In 2011 it raised £722,000 from nearly 200 people and established a loan facility with Scottish and Southern Energy of £1 million. They installed 612kW of renewables in total with 362kW of solar PV across 10 schools and community buildings and another 250kW array. They have also delivered energy efficiency projects in local schools. Over the next 3-4 years they aim to increase their installed renewables’ capacity to 5 MW.

BEST RENEWABLE ENERGY SCHEME
Langage Farm (Smithaleigh, Devon)

In 2011 Langage Farm and Dairy Produce factory integrated an anaerobic digester into its operations. The plant now provides enough heat and energy to run both the farm and the dairy produce factory, while dealing with waste produced from the plant. The bio-fertiliser output is then applied to the farmland that grows the grass, which the cows eat and use to produce milk. This is then used to make dairy products.

INSTALLER OR SUPPLIER OF THE YEAR
Solarsense (Backwell, Bristol)

Solarsense is a leading renewable energy company in the south west. Recent installations have included Bristol Zoo, the Glastonbury Festival site and At-Bristol. Solarsense has also recruited an additional 20 staff. It has grown consistently over the years, supports community projects and charity work and, perhaps most importantly, has shown in the way it has navigated the changes to the Feed-in-Tariff that it looks like a business that will cope in world without subsidies.

MOST PROACTIVE PUBLIC SECTOR BODY
Exeter and East Devon Growth Point

Devon County, East Devon District, and Exeter City Councils came together in 2007 through the Exeter and East Devon Growth Point to support the delivery of a major development programme. At the heart of this development is a biomass energy centre and district heating network to serve the new Cranbrook community. In conjunction with E.On, this network will ultimately extend to 75 km and will serve both homes and commercial space. The judges noted that it is a major development that proves that zero carbon is achievable, demonstrates new commercial arrangements and shows what district authorities can deliver.

SW SUSTAINABLE ENERGY CHAMPION
Steve Edmunds (Nr Glastonbury, Somerset)

In 2007 Steve presented to the rest of the board of Mole Valley Farmers with his conviction that renewable energy could become very important to the rural economy and environment. Steve then spent two years of his own time researching, understanding and assessing the various technologies that would benefit the rural economy and environment. The judges were particularly impressed by Steve’s practical approach of showing ‘what works’. He has shown immense ingenuity in supporting farming and the rural landscape by securing another substantial income for farmers across the region.

To view information on all of the finalists, visit: http://goo.gl/ONdtH

-ENDS-

Notes to editors

Interviews
To interview Merlin Hyman, contact James Reddy on the number below.

About Regen SW
Regen SW is an independent not for profit company working to enable business, local authorities and other organisations to deliver renewable energy and energy efficiency and build a prosperous low-carbon economy in the south west of England. www.regensw.co.uk

Regen has over 250 member organisations working in the field of renewable energy.

For further information
Please contact James Reddy, Regen SW Press Associate on 07967 835947 or email jreddy@regensw.co.uk 

 
 

 

With thanks to the 2012 Green Energy Award Sponsors