A workshop aimed at finding environmental energy solutions for communities in the North East attracted green-geared participants when it held its first session this month.
Low-carbon solutions were the focus of a new networking event, aimed at bringing together people with an interest in community led energy projects.
The Community Energy Workshop, the first of its kind in County Durham, was organised by Durham County Council’s low-carbon team. Over 80 people attended, including attendees from Community Energy England, Durham University, Northern Powergrid and the North East Local Enterprise Partnership.
It was hoped community groups and energy companies taking part would start to build up a network and identify any gaps in funding or support available.
Cllr John Clare, Durham County Council’s climate change champion, said: “It was my privilege to open this workshop and the talks were fantastic. It was vibrant, enthusiastic, well organised and was great to see the event was so well attended by so many like-minded groups and organisations.
“It was very beneficial to exchange ideas and knowledge and we hope, going forward, this will become a regular event.”
Helen Grayshan, Business Energy Efficiency Project manager with Durham County Council, said: “Our aim was to start building a community network, match community groups and map support already available, identify support gaps, and start to build a business case for future work.
“We tried to find all the main support bodies already existing, and a few more identified themselves on the day, which is great.”
Emma Bridge, Community Energy England chief executive officer, said: “I found it to be a great day full of genuine enthusiasm.”
Anda Baumerte, sustainability manager at Northern Powergrid, said: “It is encouraging to see so many people interested in tackling the climate emergency, and I hope we can maintain this momentum.”
The workshop was held at The Greenhouse in Annfield Plain.
For more about how the council is working towards low-carbon solutions visit www.durham.gov.uk/climatechange