After launching the first community-owned solar farm company in Canberra, ACT in 2015, Founder of SolarShare Lawrence McIntosh says residents have more political power to demand for a push for renewables than they think – and getting involved through community-minded eco-friendly societies is a great place to start.

By Joanne Leila Smith

Since Chancellor Angela Merkel declared that Germany would close all its reactors by 2022, after the Fukushima nuclear power plant meltdown in 2011, Germany is progressively making good on its promised Energiewende – an energy revolution – whereby the country plans to generate most of its energy through renewable sources (wind, solar hydro). Legislative support for the Energiewende was passed in late 2010 which includes a renewable energy target of 60 percent by 2050. As of 2017, renewables surpassed over 41 percent of Germany’s power supply. Wow.

With the Trump administration switching gears to ramp up coal-powered energy generation, most of the developed world is now looking to Germany’s leadership in the renewables space for answers.  One of the hall-marks of Germany’s remarkably swift transitioning to clean energy can largely be credited to the will to renewable power by grass-roots, citizens’ associations. If we consider renewable energy infrastructure (think of the modular nature of solar panels for example) by the nature of its singular modality, mass-adoption of renewable energy may herald the eventual decentralisation of what has been traditionally, a very monopolised energy market.

Resistance, and caution by politicians and energy incumbents to renewable energy over the past two decades should come as no surprise.

Nonetheless, with community-owned wind and solar farms popping up around the globe, citizens can now play a direct role and profit from, energy production.

According to Founder of SolarShare Lawrence McIntosh, based in Canberra, Australia, feeling a sense of ownership over the physical asset is a major incentive to getting citizens on board the clean energy train.

“I feel like what is happening in the renewables space is going well. There’s plenty of room for people to point fingers at the Federal Government or Industry Regulators to be more aggressive, but its more complicated than that and for good reason. I understand why regulation and change is a slow process because it must be ris

Lawrence McIntosh, INDVSTRVS, Joanne Leila Smith, SolarShare, PV Labs, community solar farms

Lawrence McIntosh – Energising Communities

After launching the first community-owned solar farm company in Canberra, ACT in 2015, Founder of SolarShare Lawrence McIntosh says residents have more political power to demand for a push for renewables than they think – and getting involved through community-minded eco-friendly societies is a great place to start. By Joanne Leila Smith Since...


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