The move to net zero creates a once in a lifetime opportunity to genuinely establish democratic ownership of the UK’s energy assets
Over the next 10 years many of our fossil fuelled power stations will be replaced with wind farms and solar parks. As well as avoiding catastrophic climate change, the transition to a renewables based energy system creates a once in a lifetime opportunity to transform ownership of the UK’s energy assets.
The Government, alongside utilities and the City are gearing up to deliver the huge investment the transition requires. But what about consumers? Why shouldn’t they be part of it too?
Renewables are different, they can be owned by consumers
Wind farms and solar parks are now the cheapest new sources of electricity around the world. They have a relatively high upfront capital cost, but once operational, they’re simple to run and have really low and stable operating costs. Crucially, unlike coal and gas power plants, renewable energy assets are easy for consumers to own (with a bit of help).
Ripple is the UK’s first green energy ownership platform. It enables people to part own new, large scale wind farms and solar parks via ownership co-operatives and have the green, stable priced electricity produced supplied to their home via the grid. It’s genuine democratic ownership.
The days of individual energy ownership being limited to rooftop solar are over.
A new form of digital, collective ownership
Ripple launched the first wind farm on its platform in June 2020. It split up a 2.5 million watt wind farm into individual watts. It enables people to own as many watts as they want and get the green electricity those watts generate supplied to their home. This will be the first of many, progressively bigger wind farms, and eventually offshore wind farms too, to be opened up for consumer ownership.
It’s a really easy way for people to fund the clean energy assets that supply their homes and reap the benefits of ownership, direct. Because wind and solar are the cheapest sources of new electricity, their owners get cheaper electricity bills as well as shrinking their carbon footprint.
Consumers can be a new source of finance – given the opportunity
Rishi Sunak, the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, has set out really ambitions plans to secure the finance needed to fund the green industrial revolution. Plans include a new development bank and sovereign green bonds. But so far, it looks set to be a big boys’ game. There’s no mention of consumers or households.
To reach net zero we need to use every solution in the toolbox, wind, solar, nuclear, hydrogen and more. And just like there is no silver bullet to tackle climate change, there is no single solution for funding it either.
Just as there are new, better ways of generating electricity, there are new, better ways of owning energy assets too. The Government’s plans talk of unleashing innovation and developing new sources of finance. That is exactly what Ripple offers. Consumers can be a new source finance for clean energy – but they need to be given the opportunity.
Private, collective ownership, delivering savings and clean electricity direct to the owners is a new market solution that can work alongside institutional and utility owners with ease. Private, but democratic and accessible for everyone.
We stand ready to help consumers own their clean energy future.