We were delighted to hear that the CREEL project on Canna has won the 2019 Best Community Project award at the prestigious Scottish Green Energy Awards. Geraldine Mackinnon, chair of CREEL, was at the Scottish Renewables event and so was able to collect the award in person.
The Canna Renewable Energy and Electrification project involved the construction of a new system based around wind, solar and battery storage which has drastically reduced fuel usage and running costs.
Wind & Sun had been involved in helping develop the system over the last five years after residents from Canna visited our previous pioneering work on the neighbouring Isles of Eigg and Muck.
The system consists of 225kWh battery store, 54kW inverter system 30kWp PV array and six 6kW wind turbines.
We carried out the installation during several trips over the summer of 2018 and this year we went back and added a further 8.4kWp of PV. We will have a continuing involvement providing remote support and annual maintenance.
The community has established its own enterprise - Canna Renewable Energy and Electrification Ltd (CREEL) - to own and operate the new equipment. Electricity will be provided to residents after which profits from the power generated will be used to cover operation and maintenance costs, and reduce bills for local homes and businesses.
During the first year of operation, the new system has generated over 138MWh of electricity, of which 93% was renewable. This has resulted in a 94% reduction in diesel usage, saving 100.9 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. The generators ran for under 2% of the time (operating less than 3 times per month on average), compared to running 24/7 previously.
More details on the system can be found here