04 Dec 2008 05:12:59
Micro-hydro powers Co-op food store
The first community-owned micro-hydropower project is to provide half the electricity required by a Derbyshire Co-operative Group (Co-op) food store.
According to the Co-op, its New Mills 7,340 sq ft store will also be the first retail outlet to be powered by micro-hydropower.
Using the River Goyt's fast flow, the facility is expected to generate 240,000 kilowatt hours, accounting for seasonal variations in water volumes.
As well as buying the electricity from the micro-hydropower plant, the Co-op helped set the project up.
Chris Shearlock, sustainable development manager at the Co-op, said: "In addition to buying the hydro electricity for our food store in New Mills, the Co-operatives family of businesses have worked together to support the innovative scheme, with a grant from the Co-operative Fund to help with the establishment of community-ownership and the Co-operative Bank helping with commercial finance.
"We are also planning to extend this support to further micro-hydro schemes across the country."
The Co-op has gained recognition for its environmental initiatives earlier this year it won the Management Award at the European Business Awards for the Environment and the year before won at the Business Commitment to the Environment Awards.http://www.british-hydro.org/