A collectively developed Community Energy Strategy for Bristol, driving initiatives that will put Bristol on the map, creating Bristol’s best future and establishing ‘Bristol firsts’ in community energy and energy efficiency; the result of community projects and city-wide partnerships working effectively together.

Collective strategy writting

The strategy is being develop as a wiki. That wiki can be accessed here: https://sites.google.com/site/benwiki4/

Its a little bit temperamental and there have been issues with accessing it. You need to have a gmail account to edit it and its often easier to log in to that account first before signning into the wiki page. If your having any trouble accessing the wiki please email us at Bristol.energy.network@gmail.com and we’ll try and find a way through!

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Next steps:

Eight volunteers are currently frantically trying to get a document which is revised to take into account the workshop outputs but that task is taking longer than anticipated! We have taken the decision to hold off on circulating the document as people asked for clear tasks to get stuck into and the wiki is currently anything but clear.

We anticipate circulating a Word version of the draft strategy on Tuesday 30th.

3rd Strategy workshop – Addressing pathways, roles, actions

Monday 20th May, 7 – 9pm, Venue tbc. This is the final session pre Big Green Week to get together and close off this stage.

Monitoring and evaluation workshop? Jo Hamilton from Oxford Environmental Change institute has offered to run a workshop for Bristol groups in late June or early July. This could be a useful exercise for developing an understanding of who is doing what and what gaps could be filled as we develop coherent pathways for the strategy following Big Green Week. We are interested to hear your thoughts on this.

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The Background: 
Following the election of our first mayor George Ferguson and a lively debate at the BEN November open meeting individuals participating in the BEN Google group put together an initial justification for a strategy. That document can be found here.  We’ve received feedback on this from the council, CSE and others, met with interested people and spent many a dark hour discussing it.

Since March there have been two open workshops to develop Bristol’s first community energy strategy. The first workshop was fast and furious, designed to collect ideas and content. The notes from the first workshop were refined and built into the wiki. An open collective writing session and introudction to the wiki was held in early April and a second open workshop in mid April reviewed progress at collective writing. Summaries of the workshops can be found below.

Summary of 1st workshop: 

– Simon Kenton from Community Action Groups, Oxfordshire outlined their approach

– The aim of strategy and process was introduced,

– Working in five tables, themes of the strategy were developed

Summary of 2nd workshop: 

– Broad agreement on the 5 themes, i.e. everyone thought these represented the sector well

– Partial agreement on the objectives for each theme

– Not much agreement on the detailed wording

Importantly most people agreed that it was a strategy primarily for the groups and people involved in the sector (a manifesto for community energy sector in Bristol), and perhaps secondly as a document to show to local Govt, national Govt, funders, businesses, etc.

Notes from both workshops can be found on the resources section of this site, click here

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Strategy Launch events and Big Green Week

At present we are planning two launch events both within Big Green Week (15th– 23rd June):

1. At the first event the Mayor George Ferguson has been asked to launch the strategy alongside the Bristol Solar City initiative on Friday 21st June, 10 am in the ‘Solar Pavilion*’ on College Green. Big Green Week detials here

2. The second event is a chance for us to celebrate what we’ve achieved and relax with a drink. Friday 21st June, 6 – 8.30pm at Zero Degrees Big Green Week details here

The first event is outward facing, seeking to attract council, business and media attention, whilst the second is designed for us the communities to share what we have done and engage others. Details can be found on the Big Green Week website and further information will be posted on this website shortly.

*The Solar pavilion will run for 3 days from Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd of June. The idea is to bring together energy related business and community activity in one place. At present we are seeking ideas for activities, workshops and talks that could take place there. If you have a suggestion please drop us an email Bristol.energy.network@gmail.com

Energised communities: research in practice

The 3rd Big Green Week event is focused on the current university of Bristol research project into Maintaining Momentum in Community Energy. Their– practitioner seminar is on the Friday 21st 11.30 – 6.00 immediately preceding the Zero Degrees event. The seminar will explore how communities impact on the way we use energy and includes speakers from a range of universities across the country.

Further information can be found here: http://bristolenergynetwork.org/mm/bgwseminar and here http://biggreenweek.com/session/energised-communities-research-in-practi…

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