Community Energy


Accelerating Community Energy in the Highlands and Islands

CARES plus is a pilot ‘Fast-Track’ programme of support for selected community energy projects in the Highlands and Islands.

It will work intensively with a limited number of advanced community energy projects to help them achieve key milestones towards financial close and installation. HIE have commissioned Community Energy Scotland (CES) to deliver this programme, which is provided at no cost to eligible organisations. 

We recognise that development conditions for community energy projects are challenging and that recent changes to UK level incentives have added further pressures to the timescales for completion. Working with the current Scottish Government CARES scheme, the additional support offered in this programme aims to enable communities to get their projects over the finish line as soon as possible.

Benefits of CARES plus

The support offered will be tailored to the stage each participating community project has reached and delivered through a number of routes which include the following:

  • A series of tailored residential sessions in the Highlands and Islands focussing on specific topics such as funding opportunities, FiT registration, refinancing options and other relevant issues
  • A strong mutual support network across participating projects
  • Identification and facilitation of collaborative opportunities between participating groups, such as procurement of services for your project
  • Monthly group telephone coaching and mentoring sessions on key topics relevant to specific project requirements
  • One to one support from in house and external expertise
  • Support focused on the most relevant stage for your own project to provide timely identification of issues and relevant solutions to keep your project moving
  • Capturing and sharing learning resulting from the programme

The programme will work in partnership with the support provided through HIE account managers and the complementary range of national support available in the community energy sector.


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