Ace is a renewable energy initiative which has been launched across several North West European countries.
Ace promotes the importance of renewable energy in the everyday life of citizens, businesses and local government – the idea is, if the right information is supplied, more people will use renewable energy. Ace supports the fact that renewable energy is necessity for our future.

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This awards category was open to local and regional initiators, groups and organisations that have successfully implemented or initiated a specific renewable energy project.

Community-Based Renewable Energy

Current Ace Projects

Click on the images to your right to learn more about different renewable energy projects taking place throughout europe.

WINNER: Resilient Energy Great Dunkilns

Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

  • Ace Award Overall Winner

    Aim:  The development of St Briavel’s Community wind turbine through first crowd-funded renewable energy project. The initiative will enable 57% of the scheme’s lifetime revenue to be retained in the local community. 4% revenue going to a community fund, and social capital by establishing joint ventures with local contractors. Target Area:  Local village community of St Briavels Technologies: Community Scale Wind Turbine Stakeholders: 50/50 joint venture between The Resilience Centre and pioneering farmer Mr Anthony Cooke, of Great Dunkilns Farm. Resilient Energy Great Dunkilns (REGD) is the first in a number of joint venture renewables companies from The Resilience Centre Ltd and with the first operational Community Scale Wind Turbine project. Funding: REGD launched the UK’s first Public Debenture investment opportunity for Community Scale Wind in 2012, working with Abundance NRG Ltd an FSA approved agent and arranger. The offer raised £1.4 million with investments from just £5 to £50,000 and target returns of 6.75% – 8% (annual average on invested capital). REGD completed installation of the 87m, 500kW wind turbine in October 2012,and signed a power purchase agreement with Co-operative Energy. Investors in REGD who switch to Co-op Energy for their electricity supply receive a £50 bonus from Co-op Energy. In spring 2013 REGD established the St Briavels Wind Turbine Community Fund. The project has already donated £8000 to successful applicants (selected by an Advisory Panel of local community representatives)in the twice yearly funding rounds which will run for the 25 years of turbine operation. Applications are assessed by the panel against the simple criteria of being of community benefit to the local host community (St Briavels and environs)and helping to build community resilience by addressing current needs or future challenges. Allocations of available funds are made by the panel based on merit.



Hampshire, United Kingdom

  • Aim: The aim is to spread awareness of the benefits of greater energy efficiency and to give practical help to people who want to insulate their homes, save energy, and reduce their energy bills.

    Target Area: Alton Community

    Technologies: The project started out with a community DIY insulation programme, distributing over 4,500 rolls of insulation to more than 500 homeowners in the Alton area (population circa 16,000), saving over £27,000 in the first 12 months. The reward for the community for their collective effort was the installation of a 10kW solar PV installation on the town library. The PV system not only generates income to support further community projects, but was installed on a building where it would have high visibility and educational benefits. The 40 solar panel array is on course to generate up to 10,000kWh per year and save 5 tons of CO2. Under their agreement with the local council, Energy Alton will share the income from the Feed in Tariff for 15 years and Hampshire Country Council will receive free electricity for over 25 years.

    Stakeholders: Energy Alton is a community project entirely reliant on volunteers.

    Funding: Supported by a Government grant, which helped to fund the first energy efficiency projects. Income is generated from their solar PV initiative and also funds some of their projects.

    Additional benefits: An Energy Advice Centre on the High Street provides information on energy efficiency and local deals on insulation. Energy Alton has carried out 200 home energy surveys and are in the process of taking 150 thermal images of homes to help households identify where they are losing heat. They are now looking at how they can enable local people to benefit from the new ECO and Green Deal home improvement schemes.



Normandy, France

  • Aim: The project aims to develop and to conceive a pilot process that adds value to horse manure and convert it into solid agro-fuel and biogas. The project hopes to produce an agrofuels to the standard NF 444 Biofuels pellets from horse manure and woody green waste, while methanising some of the organic materials in order to produce the energy required for pelleting and economic balance device.

    Target Area: Communities, agricultural stakeholders and the social and solidarity economy sector in Normandy

    Technologies: Agrofuels from horse manure waste

    Stakeholders: The producers of plant biomass, local authorities, the Caisse des Dépôts and investors. The radius of collecting inputs is between 20 and 30 km from the place of production. The distribution of the granules is provided by biofuels distributors.


REGIONAL FINALIST: Drombane Upperchurch Energy Team

Co. Tipperary, Ireland

  • Aim:  The Drombane Upperchurch Energy Team (DUET) community-led retrofit initiative was developed for householders in the parish.

    Target Area: 55 homes and two community buildings

    Technologies: Since a community energy survey in 2011,  55 homes and two community buildings were retrofitted, leveraging over €400,000 of investment into the locality.

    Stakeholders:  Member of the community approach North Tipperary LEADER Partnership seeking help. The appointment of a community development worker by NTPL to assist with the development of a community initiative scheme throughout the Drombane area.

    Funding: Funding was provided under the SEAI’s Better Energy Communities Scheme. North Tipperary LEADER Partnership supported the project throughout.


REGIONAL FINALIST: Verduurzaam FC Dauwendaele (Sustainable Football Club Dauwendaele)

Zeeland, Netherlands

  • Aim: To inspire the community on how to create a more sustainable lifestyle, how to take good care of the body and how to create a social bond within the community. Through the case study of Verduurzaam FC Dauwendaele, the community learns in many different ways how to easily become more sustainable, healthy, social and through this contribute to a better world.

    Target Area: FC Dauwendaele and the wider city neighborhood of Dauwendaele ( 4,500 people)

    Technologies: Investment of €10,000 in solar panels, which will benefit the soccer club directly by decreasing annual energy costs, getting closer to becoming energy neutral and reduce CO2 emissions.

    Stakeholders: Gemeente Middelburg, Dauwendaele community, FC Dauwendaele, NJR, Delta, Rabobank , Zeeuwind and Zeeuws Klimaat Fonds. Signed partnership with a health specialist and a company that provides bootcamps.

    Funding: Winner of the “Middelburg Energieneutraal” competition with a prize money of €10,000 to be invested in solar energy.


REGIONAL FINALIST: Zon op School - Stedendriehoek

Apeldoorn, Netherlands

  • Aim: ‘Zon op School’ is a project developed by five local energy-companies around Apeldoorn with the goal to install solar panels on the roofs of primary schools in this region to reduce the use of fossil fuels and increase sustainable energy. The project includes awareness raising through energy education and helps the energy companies to promote their own services.

    Target Area: 50 schools in Apeldoorn

    Technologies: An average of 80 solar panels of 260 Wp per school is expected, which means a production of sustainable energy of about 17.000 kWh per school per year. For 50 schools this means an energy production of 850,000 kWh per year.

    Stakeholders: The board of the school that must agree to ‘Zon op School’ and must give a commitment for 25 years; The parents, who need to buy enough sun-certificates; The province and the region required for funding (max. €10,000 per school, max 50% of the investment); Municipality of Apeldoorn as the project contributes to the aim to be Energy Neutral in the future; DeA, the local energy cooperation

    Funding: The critical point is the necessary funding by the province. Without this additional funding the project is not possible. Schools (medium energy users) pay less for energy than private households (minor energy users) in the Netherlands. The payback time for Solar PV for medium energy users exceeds more of less the lifetime of the solar panels.


REGIONAL FINALIST: Infrared photography

Leuven, Belgium

  • Aim: To reduce the energy consumption not by energy calculations but by visualising heat loss through infrared photography. Residents receive additional advice on opportunities to reduce this energy loss as well as information on potential subsidies. If the occupant orders insulation works, a new infra-red photo can be taken to show the differences. Interleuven has developed coaching in dialogue with the participating municipalities.

    Target Area: Interleuven

    Technologies: Infrared (IR) photography

    Stakeholders: Municipalities , Local groups