Energy Garden supports communities to install and maintain gardens on railway stations across London. Revenue generated by the sale of community-owned renewable energy funds their gardens and education programmes.
Energy Garden, is a not-for-profit Community Benefit Society that works with local communities to invest in renewable energy generation, green London’s transportation infrastructure, improve air quality and biodiversity, and empower communities and young people to take climate action. Working in partnership with organisations such as Transport for London (TfL), Network Rail and Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), Energy Garden has established a network of 28 community gardens across London and has developed the first community-owned renewable energy project on UK rail infrastructure. The revenues from energy generation are then used to support community engagement and AQA-accredited youth training programmes.
By transforming grey transport platforms into vibrant green spaces, Energy Garden creates a focal point for engagement with volunteers and commuters alike, providing access to both nature and community that supports improved health and well-being, as well as delivering improved air quality and biodiversity. Energy Garden also reaches out into local communities’ primary schools to run classroom-based workshops, where children learn about solar power, electricity, plants and urban gardening.
All Energy Garden projects gardens are 100% community owned and led, from the gardens themselves to the development of new renewable energy projects.
Donations from ecolibrium members to the Energy Revolution project in 2021 will go towards supporting Energy Garden continued development of community owned renewable energy projects in 2022 and beyond. A typical project size will be 250 kWp generating around 270 MWh of electricity and saving around 57,000 tonnes CO2 each year. The revenue from these solar projects will support the development and maintenance of community gardens across the London Overground, bringing benefit to the environment, commuters and local people.
The 28 energy gardens in the network connect with 365,000 London commuters per day. To date, this programme has:
- Transformed thousands of square metres of London Overground trackside space
- Mobilised and engaged over 300 volunteers
- Held around 200 public consultations
- Facilitated around 70 schools workshops with over 2,000 children engaged
- Provided AQA-accreditation for 62 young Londoners in renewable energy and horticulture
- Engaged almost 50 community groups and held 230 gardening events in 2021 alone
Empowering communities to regenerate London from seed to solar power.Energy Garden
ecolibrium investment will help the project build on four key strands of work:
Renewable Energy projects: Developing new, community-owned projects on transport infrastructure and beyond. Energy Garden’s first project delivered a 231 kWp solar array at the GTR Traincare Depot in Streatham. These sites are well suited to the installation of solar PV arrays given the large roof area, south facing pitched roof and high onsite usage. Energy Garden is also working with other partners, such as the NHS, to expand delivery beyond the rail network.
Energy Garden Network: Community-run gardens to brighten up grey transport corridors, produce food and improve urban biodiversity and connect local people. The revenue from the sale of solar PV energy supports these garden projects and their communities into the future.
Energy Garden Youth Training The internship is paid at London Living Wage and AQA accredited. This programme provides an opportunity for young people across London to gain valuable experience in cooperative business practices, environmental technology, communications, and community development, allowing them to take their careers forward.
School Workshop Programme: Energy Garden has delivered around 70 classroom-based workshops to primary schools, where children learnt about solar power, electricity, plants and urban gardening. If you know a school or teacher who would be interested in the Energy Garden project, and would benefit from a free workshop linked to the national curriculum, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Energy Garden’s work is in line with 15 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
Find out how more about ecolibrium’s Energy Revolution programme and our other project partners.
Image Credit: Energy Garden London