“A collection of people and/or organisations who work together to produce, store, distribute and make best use of solar electricity for purposes other than maximising economic return and which deliver social and environmental benefits.”
Solar PV communities have the following characteristics:
- They are “mission-driven” so have a central purpose other than profit. Typically, these projects will put surpluses back into activity that has social or environmental benefits.
- They are democratic and inclusive – so enable citizens to play a role in decision-making and have a share in the benefits of the project, frequently through shared ownership of the project.
- They seek to maximise the environmental benefit of PV installations by making efficient use of the energy generated (usually consuming at least some of the energy generated on the same site through “prosumer” models) and enabling increased grid-penetration of renewable energy through managing the impact of challenges such as intermittency on security of supply.