‘Shine On’ - Greener Kirkcaldy’s community building project
Greener Kirkcaldy is a community-led charity and development trust working locally to benefit people and our environment. It would like to see a future where everybody is able to heat their home affordably, eat well, and tread more lightly on our planet.
The project installed a 19.2 kW solar PV array on the roof of their community building. This was connected to a 27 kWh capacity Tesla Powerwall battery energy storage system and to their existing electric vehicle charging point. Smart controls ensure that they make the most of the solar energy generated on site.
Greener Kirkcaldy’s community building, situated in Kirkcaldy’s town centre, includes a community training kitchen with eight workstations, a commercial kitchen, a meeting and events space, and office space for 20 staff. It is open to the public five days a week.
The centre hosts a social enterprise cookery school, community meals and events including pop-up cafes, employability projects, and a ‘Community Fridge’ which redistributes good food that would otherwise go to waste. The building welcomes around 1,000 visitors each month.
A major redevelopment of the building was recently completed – this included making improvements to the building’s fabric, installing insulation, and renewing the large flat roof.
Project aims and objectives:
Greener Kirkcaldy wanted to reduce both the carbon footprint of their building and their energy costs. They also wanted the building to inspire other community buildings in urban areas to install their own renewable energy systems.
Outcomes and achievements:
The project is still in its early days, but Greener Kirkcaldy expect to achieve:
- Financial savings of £1,849 per year
- Income to Greener Kirkcaldy from the Smart Export Guarantee
- Carbon savings of 6.4t CO2 per year.
The group reports that staff have had many conversations with visiting members of the public about local energy production because the batteries are in their community space. The visibility of the batteries has proven to be a great conversation starter for people to engage others in discussions about local energy production and making the best use of energy produced on site. A representative from Greener Kirkcaldy is also pleased to report that the installation of the solar panels and batteries was “quick and straightforward.”