74% of Scots believe fuel poverty is an issue that must be solved urgently
38% say that investing in renewable energy is the best solution to tackling fuel poverty
New research from Mongoose Energy – the UK’s largest community-owned renewable energy company – and Our Power – a UK non-for-profit set up to tackle fuel poverty – shows that over a third of Scots (36%) admit to living in fuel poverty, with this affecting over half of all millennials (56%). With fuel prices continuing to rise, 38% of Scots consider investment in renewable energy projects as the best solution, preferring this to increased regulation and fuel price freezes, whilst three quarters (74%) are calling for the crisis to be dealt with as a matter of urgency.
To help tackle the situation, Mongoose Energy and Our Power have partnered to launch two community-owned renewable energy projects in East Lothian and Berwickshire. The wind farms, based in Pogbie, East Lothian, and Brockholes, Berwickshire, will be seeking to raise £2,875,000 to fund the projects, across both bond and equity offers, with all surplus profits invested into helping alleviate fuel poverty in Scotland. This effort aims to reduce the number of people who have to spend more than 10% of their household income just to keep their houses heated to a basic level.
Further research from Mongoose Energy has demonstrated that almost two thirds (60%) of Brits are seeking exactly these sorts of investment opportunities, where they have the chance to ‘do good’, rather than just making a profit. This is a growing trend, with a fifth (21%) of people saying that they are more likely to invest in this type of fund now than they were five years ago, with many choosing investments in ethical funds and renewable energy due to the guarantee that their money will be used to ‘do good’ (25%), a desire for higher interest rates (32%), and the poor performance of current investments, such as cash ISAs (17%).
Those investing in these energy projects, launching on 28th March, will be able to take advantage of target interest rates of between 6.6% and 8.1%, have a stake in local renewable energy generation, as well as see the real impact this investment has on helping to reduce fuel poverty across Scotland.
Alister Steele, Chair of Our Power: “Our Power’s ambition includes securing a long-term supply of renewable energy. This innovative initiative will create the potential to not only secure local renewable energy in a cost effective way, which will help us deliver our social mission of tackling fuel poverty, but provides the potential for wider community investment in the assets. Directly linking renewable generation and not for profit ownership to addressing fuel poverty is a really exciting breakthrough.”
Mark Kenber, CEO of Mongoose Energy, commented: “The findings of this research show the critical levels to which fuel poverty has risen in Scotland. It also shows that an increasingly purpose-minded public is seeking out alternative ways to invest their money that help solve major issues such as this. Their investment choices are no longer driven solely by high rates of return but also by a desire for tangible, positive impact on their community.
“The bond and equity offers in Pogbie and Brockholes provide these investors with the chance to earn competitive rates of interest on their investments, whilst also making a huge impact on the lives of others. We have committed to ensuring that the profits generated by the project are used to help make energy more affordable for all, providing much-needed funds to help end fuel poverty in Scotland.”
Paul Wheelhouse, Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, commented: “I am delighted that the Scottish Government has played its part in making this project happen, by providing £3,500,000 of funding from our Renewable Energy Investment Fund. In addition to tackling fuel poverty, Our Power has committed to provide a community benefit package, in line with the Scottish Government’s Good Practice Principles to the local community of East Lothian.”
Those interested in helping to solve the fuel poverty crisis and in investing in community-owned, renewable energy can visit the Mongoose Energy website, or join the waiting list ahead of the upcoming launch of £2,875,000 in community-focused investment opportunities.
Please note that investing in the projects promoted by Mongoose Energy puts your capital at risk and returns are not guaranteed. Please read the full risk warning on https://www.mongoosecrowd.co.uk/risk before deciding to invest.