Hydro scheme launched

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A new community-owned hydro scheme on the River Avich launched its share offer on Saturday to raise £400,000 of the £1.2 million needed to build the project.

Awesome Energy (Dalriada) Ltd, a community-owned energy society based at Dalavich Post Office, ‘exists to build a 350kW run-of-river hydro scheme, install a microgrid fed by the hydro, and manage the supply and demand of the renewable scheme for the benefit of the community.’

In a ballot held for the National Forest land Scheme, 90 per cent voted to lease land for the hydro Forestry Commission Scotland. The share offer explains: ‘We are now ready for investors to buy shares to make the hydro a reality. The project will only go ahead if we raise at least £400,000 from this share offer. You can buy any multiple of £25 shares from £250 to £100,000.

‘Projected green energy generation is 1149 MWh per year, producing average net profits of £85,000 per year for 20 years. These profits will be gifted to our local charity.’ Their ‘target interest rate is four per cent per year, paid from our second year, but if there is an unexpected problem, directors will have the discretion to pay a lower amount.

‘The pipeline will follow the route of an historical hydro scheme on the River Avich, and the new turbine house will be situated close to the ruins of the old one. We hope to start construction in April 2017, and to start generating electricity in November 2017.’

Members are also invited to join the board, and you can find more information at www.awesome-energy.com