As the UN calls for ‘immediate, rapid and large-scale reductions in greenhouse gas emissions’, residents across the West of England will get their chance to save money on their energy bills, and play their part in cutting carbon emissions. It is all thanks to a new scheme being launched by the West of England Combined Authority, led by Metro Mayor Dan Norris, today (Monday 23 August).
By banding together, residents across Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire will be able to get cheaper deals to install solar panels and set up a battery storage system at their home, as part of ‘Solar Together West of England’.
West of England Metro Mayor Dan Norris said: “Many residents know solar panels have the potential to save them money on their energy bills and cut carbon, but sometimes there’s a fear that the whole process can be daunting and confusing which can put people off.
“This new scheme will make the process easier. It means local residents can generate their own clean electricity, save money on their energy bills, and play an important part in our collective efforts to cut harmful carbon emissions and reach our ambitious net zero targets.”
Homeowners across the West of England can register to take part by visiting www.solartogether.co.uk/west-of-england
People who already have solar panels installed can also register to have battery storage added to their existing solar panels to maximise the benefits of their system.
Solar Together West of England follows other successful schemes across the country, which have delivered more than 3,700 installations and 61,000 tonnes of avoided lifetime carbon emissions.
Marie-Louise Abretti, iChoosr UK (Solar Together) Business Manager, said: “With West of England residents looking for opportunities to reduce their carbon emissions and save on energy bills, the Solar Together group-buying scheme offers a straightforward way to make an informed decision and access a competitive offer from a trusted provider.”
Councillor Sarah Warren, Bath & North East Somerset Council’s deputy leader, Climate Emergency and Sustainable Travel, said: “Bath and North East Somerset has declared a climate emergency and has committed to providing the leadership for the district to be carbon neutral by 2030. One of the key priorities to achieve this is a rapid and large-scale increase in local renewable energy generation.
“This scheme makes it easier for home owners across B&NES to make the switch to renewable energy and reduce their energy bills and I would encourage residents to sign up.”
Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol said: “It’s great these technologies are available to homeowners, giving them the ability to switch to renewable energy and therefore cut their carbon emissions and reduce energy bills. An example of how environmental improvements can support better economic outcomes too.
“Tackling household emissions will play a big part in Bristol’s journey to become a carbon neutral city by 2030 and address the climate emergency. This new scheme provides a way for even more people to play their part.”
Cllr Don Davies, Leader of North Somerset Council, said: “This is a great opportunity for homeowners to reduce their carbon footprint and make a positive contribution to helping North Somerset become carbon neutral by 2030.
“Solar energy is an efficient energy solution for many properties and this project will enable residents to explore its suitability for their own homes at a reduced cost thanks to collective buying power. And it’s not just homeowners – buildings owned by town and parish councils could also be eligible for the scheme.
“I encourage anyone keen to find out more to register their interest and help avoid climate catastrophe by using cleaner energy.”
Councillor Toby Savage, Leader of South Gloucestershire Council, said: “The Climate Emergency affects us all and we need to take action now. As large organisations we will play our part and as individuals we have a role to play too. The Solar Together scheme helps us genuinely work together because we are helping to make taking action more affordable so that more people can reduce the impact of their energy use. The scheme has already delivered results elsewhere in the country so I am pleased that it will help make solar power more accessible and more affordable for households in South Gloucestershire, who I know are keen to help protect the environment we love living in.”