The Big Lemon and Brighton Energy Coop‘s joint Solar Bus project in partnership with Sussex Backup has been shortlisted in its bid for a share of the M&S Community Energy Fund, to cover the roof of The Big Lemon’s bus depot in solar panels to power the new electric buses on clean green renewable energy.
The 120 solar panels will generate 30,000kWh of electricity – the equivalent of 1.8 million kettle boils. This will power the whole of the 52 route between Woodingdean and Brighton city centre on 100% renewable energy, with no emissions coming from the bus at all.
It’s great to be working with The Big Lemon on the innovative Solar Bus project. Brighton Energy Co-op has many exciting projects, but never before have we covered the roof of a bus depot in solar panels to power the buses that live there.
This is the first project of its kind in the UK – a very exciting time for us and a project that puts Brighton & Hove at the forefront of renewable energy and transport in the UK
Will Cottrell, Chair, Brighton Energy Co-op
The M&S Community Energy Fund launched in July 2015 and has already funded 26 projects around the country. The aim of the fund is to enable more communities in the UK to generate renewable energy and become environmentally and financially sustainable. This year there is £350,000 up for grabs for the best projects, as voted for by members of the public.
The total cost of the 120-panel installation will be £25,000. The Solar Bus project is hoping to raise half of that through crowdfunding, and attract enough votes from members of the public to win £12,500 of funding from M&S Energy to cover the other half.
Crowdfunding benefits include an entry on the ‘Solar Bus Wall of Fame‘ on The Big Lemon’s website, an invite to a special Solar Bus ‘Founders Dinner’ and even naming rights on The Big Lemon’s first electric bus.
I’m hugely grateful to the M&S Community Energy Fund for giving us such a fantastic opportunity, and excited to be working with Brighton Energy Co-op on the Solar Bus project – with their expertise in solar installations we can’t go wrong.
All we have to do now is get enough votes on the M&S Community Energy Fund website and achieve our crowdfunding target… no mean feat! We are calling on everyone who wants zero-emissions buses powered on renewable energy in Brighton & Hove to help us in any way they can!
Tom Druitt, Managing Director, The Big Lemon
The Big Lemon is on a mission to bring zero-emissions electric buses to communities across the UK by 2030, all run by the local community and powered by renewable energy. This pilot project will not only be great for Brighton & Hove, it will also be the first step towards making this vision a reality.
To support the Solar Bus project please
and share the project page at https://www.mandsenergyfund.com/projects/the-big-lemon-solar-bus-project.