SEPD Resilient Communities Fund

Funding for communities preparing for extreme weather

Project duration: December 2014 to July 2015

CSE’s activities support the transition to a low carbon, affordable energy system – but as well as shifting our relationship with energy, communities need to plan for the unavoidable impacts of climate change, such as an increased likelihood of severe weather events.

Southern Electric Power Distribution (SEPD) has established a Resilient Communities Fund to help local communities plan for and cope with emergencies caused by extreme weather, such as gale force winds, floods and power cuts. The £1 million fund is open to communities across SEPD’s operational area in central southern England, who can apply for grants of £500 to £20,000.

In a complementary piece of work to our usual bread-and-butter, CSE has been invited to bring our expertise on community projects and funding to the fund’s independent grant-making panel.

Senior Development Manager Ruth Cole is representing CSE on the panel, alongside National Energy Action and the British Red Cross. She said: “Transitioning to a low carbon future is essential to help protect communities from extreme weather events made more likely by climate change, but there are also practical things that communities can do now to prepare themselves. I’m really pleased that CSE has been invited by SEPD to help with this fund, which I think a lot of community groups we work with could find useful.”

In the first round of applications, the panel awarded 17 community organisations a total of £167,000 for projects such as volunteer training and emergency equipment including back-up generators, flood defences, two-way radios and a rescue boat. Subsequent rounds will follow every six months through 2015 and 2016. For more information on criteria and deadlines, visit www.ssepd.co.uk/resiliencefund.

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