M&S Announces Launch Of £400,000 Fund To Support Renewable Energy Projects In UK

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The UK-based utility company M&S Energy — owned by the retail giant Marks & Spencer — has launched a £400,000 energy fund to spur renewable energy project development in the UK, according to recent reports.

The fund is intended as to provide support to various nonprofit organizations (schools, town libraries, sports associations) that are interested in creating renewable energy projects in their respective areas.

Marksspencer_logo

This support will reportedly be given via a number of different awards, including: a £40,000 national award, a £20,000 national award, various regional awards of up to £12,500 a piece, and a £15,000 Judges’ Prize for “innovative” or “inspiring” plans.

These national and regional awards will be determined via public votes, thereby allowing projects to be determined on the basis of public opinion, rather than arbitrarily. Or, as a statement from Marks & Spencer recently put it, allowing for “local communities to vote on the project they believe offers the greatest benefit to them.”

The lead of global Plan A delivery at M&S, Adam Elman, recently commented that the new renewable energy support fund will allow for the group’s high-profile “sustainability” strategy (dubbed Plan A) to become more localized, and thereby more visible/relevant.

“The M&S Community Energy Fund gets right to the heart of supporting our communities and provides a great opportunity for local green leaders to engage their community in the environmental and social benefits of renewable energy,” as he put.

The launch of the support fund is accompanied by the company’s recent announcement that it will soon be “supplying” 100% of its electricity from renewable energy sources. “Supplying” in this case refers to the fact that the company will be generating the equivalent of its current electricity use at 46 hydroelectric stations in Scotland.

The public vote is currently set for August 17 through September 30, 2015.

Image Credit: Marks & Spencer


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James Ayre

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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