NW communities gain funding for low carbon challenge

Michael Hunt

Ashton Hayes, Cheshire and Halton in Lancaster are two of the 12 communities in the UK that have each been awarded £500,000 from the Government's Low Carbon Community Challenge.

The grant money will be spent on a range of green measures which will cut carbon, save money on energy bills, and could even see some communities make cash from generating their own energy.

Ashton Hayes in Cheshire has already cut average household emissions of the 370 homes by 23% since May 2006. It will spend the money on various renewable generation technologies which will power part of the community.

Halton in Lancaster is looking to install a hydro turbine into the River Lune, and three solar roofs, and incorporate carbon saving measures in the renovation of Halton Mill, which will provide office and workshop space for local businesses. The profits, generated from the Government's clean energy cashback scheme, and from rents, will be ploughed back into further carbon reduction projects such as Halton Energy Network which will help households reduce their domestic carbon emissions.

Communities in Oxfordshire, Middlesbrough, Somerset and Devon, East Hampshire, mid-Cornwall, and South Wales have also been selected for the funding.

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