About Community Power
Community power means renewable energy projects developed by and owned by landowners and individuals, solely and together.
Community ownership has proven to keep economic benefits of renewable power development close to home, improving the quality of life for local residents while generating clean renewable power to displace the environmental impacts of non-renewable electricity generation.
Experience in Europe and closer to home has shown that community energy projects foster harmony within communities and empower local individuals to make a difference in fighting climate change.
CEPP Community Power Resources
Community Power Co-operative Getting Started Guidebook
The Getting Started Guidebook, developed by Community Power Fund, is written for communities and individuals interested in developing local, community-owned renewable energy generation (community power) projects.
The Getting Started Guidebook, developed by Community Power Fund, received funding support from the Ontario Power Authority through the Community Energy Partnerships Program. Such support does not indicate endorsement by the Ontario Power Authority or the Province of Ontario of the contents of this material. The views expressed on this website are the views of Community Power Fund and do not necessarily reflect those of the Ontario Power Authority or the Province of Ontario.
Project Development Maps
The following Project Development Stages Maps are available to assist communities and individuals in planning
and development a renewable energy community power project. The five Project Development Stages Maps include a Technology-Neutral Map and four Technology-Specific Maps.
The Project Development Stages Maps received funding support from the Ontario Power Authority through the CEPP. Such support does not indicate endorsement by the Ontario Power Authority or the Province of Ontario of the contents of this material. The views expressed on this website are the views of Community Power Fund and do not necessarily reflect those of the Ontario Power Authority or the Province of Ontario.
Technology Neutral Development Stages Map
Solar PV Development Stages Map
Wind Development Stages Map
Biogas Development Stages Map
Waterpower Development Stages Map
Community Power Project Series Primer: Faith Community Resource
This resource will help leaders of faith communities interested in starting a renewable energy project get a sense of the benefits and first steps of moving forward.
Community Power Project Series Primer: Community, Friendship and Cultural Centres
Understand the first steps of starting a project, benefits to undertaking a renewable energy project and read a case study on Buckhorn Community Centre's solar rooftop installation.
Community Power: Case Studies from Ontario
The following case studies, put together by Community Power Fund, have been written for communities and individuals interested in understanding some of the problems, obstacles and challenges faced by existing co-operatives in the realization of a renewable energy community power project. (Current as of August 2013)
Community Power Fund would like to thank the board and staff members of all the co-ops that participated in the development of the case studies.
The Case Studies have received funding support from the Ontario Power Authority through the Community Energy Partnerships Program. Such support does not indicate endorsement by the Ontario Power Authority or the Province of Ontario of the contents of this material. The views expressed on this website are the views of Community Power Fund and do not necessarily reflect those of the Ontario Power Authority or the Province of Ontario.
Other community power case studies:
FedSol - Donna and Harold Feddema's 250 kw solar rooftop project.
Poulettes Skye Pullets- Three farmers and neighbours build a 100 kw solar rooftop system on a chicken barn
The Monastery of Mount Carmel Solar Projects - A solar groundmount and rooftop system under development
Boys and Girls Club of London - A local organization has installed a 138 kW rooftop project to generate funds
Strathroy Middlesex General Hospital Foundation - A 250 kW solar rooftop hospital fundraising venture
SolarShare Bus - A 438 kW solar rooftop installation in Mississauga with a community financing component
Toronto Zoo Biogas - An innovative, community-owned project under development by the ZooShare Co-op
Buckhorn Community Centre - An installed 74 kW solar rooftop project on a rural community centre
Community Power: Case Studies from Around the World
Middelgrunden (Denmark) - A cooperatively-owned offshore wind power park that is stronger than ever after nine years.
Bioenergie Mureck (Germany) - Three companies constitute the "Mureck Energy Cycle" and supply the entire Mureck region with electricity, heat and fuel.
WindShare (Canada) - The first urban turbine in North America is in Toronto and is owned by individuals and the local power utility.
Toronto Renewable Energy Cooperative (TREC) (Canada) - TREC builds community-based and owned renewable energy projects and provides education about renewable energy, energy efficiency/conservation and the community power model.
Pukwis Community Wind Park (Canada) - This 20 MW community wind project will be the first in Canada to be jointly owned by a First Nation and a local cooperative.
Hepburn Wind Coop (Australia) - Hepburn Wind will be the owner and operator of Australia's first community-owned wind farm.
Windfang (Germany) - This wind energy coop is owned entirely by women. (Note: The website is available in German only.)
Community Power: Industry Associations
Ontario Sustainable Energy Association (OSEA)
OSEA is a province-wide, member-based, non-profit organization representing more than 1,500 people, including private individuals, cooperatives, farmers, First Nations, businesses, institutions and municipalities – all engaged in or supporting community power projects and renewable energy.
A US-based organization, Windustry promotes progressive renewable energy solutions and empowers communities to develop and own wind energy as an environmentally sustainable asset.
Community Power Research
From the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (US): Economic Development Impacts of Community Wind Projects: A Review and Empirical Evaluation
How community wind projects are shown to have increased local economic impact both during the construction and operations period of a wind power development.
From the Iowa Policy Project (US): Small Packages, Big Benefits: Economic Advantages of Local Wind Projects
The economic advantages of community wind, including more money staying in the community instead of being exported, increased local economic diversity, direct income for community members, and increased local jobs.
From the Sustainable Technologies Program (UK): Harnessing Community Energies
This research program looked at case studies of community power in the UK and found that almost all community power projects achieved a good general local acceptance and had a positive impact on peoples' understanding and support for renewable energy.
From the University of Manchester (UK): Reconsidering Public Attitudes and Public Acceptance of Renewable Energy Technologies
A review of studies focused on public acceptance of renewable energy technologies, including evidence that greater involvement in the setting up, ownership and financial framework of a project results in greater public acceptance.
From the Renewables Advisory Board (UK):Community Benefits from Wind Power
The Renewables Advisory Board is an independent, non-departmental public body sponsored by the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change. This study assesses the evidence base for the scale and nature of community benefits being offered in the UK as part of wind development.
From the Renewables Advisory Board (UK): Delivering community benefits from wind energy development
Why community benefits should be considered and describes different methods for offering community benefits.
From the Energy Foundation and 25x25 (US) : Community Wind 101: a Primer for Policymakers
A review of studies on community wind that provides information about community wind's economic benefits, technical issues and various policy structures.
From the Energy Trust of Oregon (US): A Comparative Analysis of Community Wind Power Development Options in Oregon
Extensive information on the history of community wind, financial analysis modelling and potential ownership structures.
From the Department of Energy (US): The Jobs Connection: Energy Use and Local Economic Development
The increased economic impact of energy dollars spent locally.
From the Canadian Co-operative Association: Wind energy cooperative development in Anglophone Canada
A survey of cooperative wind energy developments that exist in Anglophone Canada.
From the University of Moncton (New Brunswick, Canada): A Community Wind Energy Program for New Brunswick
This document presents a series of recommendations for a Community Wind Energy Program for the province of New Brunswick.
From the Vermont Biofuels Association (US): Community Supported Energy Offers a Third Way
The myriad benefits of community supported energy.
Next Page: Project Development Resources