We began our 2024 discussion events programme with two fantastic events. We’re thrilled that this year, we’re partnering more with like-minded organisations for most of the programme and these two events exemplify the value of working with other people.

Repowering London’s Éva Goudouneix co-hosted the most informative and interesting panel on London’s community energy sector.

Éva invited four brilliant cooperative directors of community energy groups and facilitated a really insightful conversation to a packed room. She even gave us a brief history of energy through fine art paintings!

  • Gabriel Brückner, from Lambeth Community Solar was asked to explain how community energy projects work in practice, with an example from his co-operative. He did so very eloquently, looking at how projects are funded, how profits are made, and where they go.
  • Kanatta Kyazze from Aldgate Solar Power was asked about the obstacles facing community energy projects. He spoke about the difficulty of finding roof space in London for solar panels and then the even bigger struggle of contacting property owners – who may be anonymous pension funds with no clear point of contact. He brought our attention to the Mayor’s London Solar Opportunity Map.
  • Yousra Salem, also from Aldgate Solar Power, was asked – can community energy help us solve the climate and energy crises? She gave a passionate and completely absorbing speech on her career journey, first witnessing the atrocities of corporate energy companies from the inside, and then investing in the radical potential of community energy.
  • Tanuja Pandit from Power Up North London was asked to share a success story and talk about some opportunities and barriers for the growth in the community energy sector. One thing that really struck a chord was her description of community energy organisations as ‘trusted intermediaries’ who can bring local people on board with projects that energy providers or local councils are struggling to deliver on the ground – because community energy organisations are largely made up of local volunteers.

Safe to say we we all left the event wanting to get involved in the community energy sector!

Our next event was a collaboration with radical bookshop, Housmans, in Kings Cross, and the FUTURES podcast hosted by Luke Robert Mason. This was the first in a series of three live podcast recordings at SPACE4.

We welcomed Dr. Corinne Cath and Dr. Fieke Jansen to talk about their book, Eaten by the Internet, and the politics of internet infrastructure. Both esteemed academics. they were incredibly knowledgeable and eloquent on the material reality of our ‘wireless’ and ‘cloud-based’ technologies, showing these words to be entirely misleading and this sector to be extremely politically charged.

You can listen to their chat in all the usual podcast places: https://futurespodcast.net/episodes/76-corinne-cath-fieke-jansen

We look forward to seeing some of you at the next two recordings! Register on Eventbrite.