Renewable energy projects typically require large investments at the beginning, making it hard for starting REScoops to launch their first projects. Our experience is that local citizens come on board more easily once the project is operational. Established REScoops - on the other hand - often raise funds easily but sometimes they lack good projects, leaving them with unused funds in their bank accounts.
With support from the Executive Agency for Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (EASME) of the European Commission, the European federation of renewable energy cooperatives is working on a solution. We will soon launch REScoop MECISE, a European Mutual for Energy Communities Investing in a Sustainable Europe. This European Cooperative Society will provide financing solutions to energy cooperatives and take ownership in their projects. REScoop MECISE will then push the local cooperatives to raise funds locally and support their fund raising campaign.
At the same time, REScoop MECISE will foster an international collaboration between energy co-ops and allow community energy initiatives to scale-up the size of individual investments. Why wouldn't REScoops be able to make investments in offshore wind farms...?
With support from legal experts, we are now writing the statutes of our cooperative society and hope to make our first investments in 2018.