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Gordon MP supports local energy Bill

By Kyle Ritchie

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Campaign group, Power for People, has thanked Gordon MP, Richard Thomson, for supporting a new Bill in Parliament that would help rebuild local economies whilst increasing clean energy generation.

The proposed new law, known as the Local Electricity Bill, is supported by a cross-party group of 259 MPs. If made law, it would create a new "Right to Local Supply" of energy that would empower communities to sell locally generated electricity directly to local households and businesses.

Currently customers can only purchase electricity from nationally licensed utilities. The Bill’s supporters say this means money people use to pay their energy bills is not helping to rebuild local economies and clean energy infrastructure.

Power for People are calling for MPs and the government to make the Bill law and are leading a supportive coalition of organisations including Community Energy Scotland, Community Energy England, Community Energy Wales, Good Energy, WWF, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and the RSPB. Sixty-eight local authorities have also pledged their support.

Power for People’s director Steve Shaw said: “We thank Richard for supporting the Local Electricity Bill. If made law, the Bill would unleash the huge potential for new community-owned clean energy infrastructure and for this to boost local economies, jobs, services, and facilities in communities across the country.”

Mr Thomson said: “I am pleased to support the Local Electricity Bill which will empower and enable new community energy companies to sell energy that they generate directly to local people, helping to strengthen local economies.

"The Bill is one which can help accelerate our transition to clean energy, which is critical in avoiding the potential economic and ecological devastation of climate change. I will do all I can to ensure it becomes law.”

Gordon MP Richard Thomson.
Gordon MP Richard Thomson.

Councillor for Ellon and District, Anouk Kloppert, who successfully secured the backing of colleagues at Aberdeenshire Council for the local electricity bill, said: “If passed, this Bill has the potential to assist local generators in selling energy to their own communities, as well as in making the costs of selling renewable electricity to local customers more proportionate by establishing a 'Right to Local Supply’.

“Renewable energy plays a vital role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The measures proposed in the Local Electricity Bill mean that local renewable generators can contract directly with communities rather than large utility companies – real localism in action.

“I feel that there are several existing projects in Aberdeenshire that would potentially benefit the local community if this Bill gets accepted in the next session of Parliament.

"If this Bill becomes law I hope this will again contribute and benefit issues around Climate Change, a better local economy and the overall stability and sustainability of the National Grid.”

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