Regional Benefit Sharing – the new frontier for Australia’s renewable energy shift?

As more renewable energy project proposals spring up in regional areas, how can we coordinate benefit sharing initiatives to ensure the best outcomes for communities and avoid duplicating efforts?

Our Directors Kim Mallee and Dr Jarra Hicks have authored a discussion paper exploring the concept of regional benefit sharing which is the strategic aggregation of community benefit sharing programs associated with energy projects that are located in a common geographic region.

To launch the report, we hosted a webinar which featured a presentation by the authors followed by insights and Q&A with fellow leading experts: Lisa Lumsden, The Next Economy; Kate Hook, RE-Alliance; and Luke Osborne, Stride Renewables.

Read the report here.

How Community Energy builds resilience & renewables – panel discussion

This webinar was delivered in partnership with the National Sustainable Living Festival in February 2021.

Starting with a brief overview of community energy, we ask two questions of established community energy groups:
1. How did your community energy group start and what has your group achieved so far
2. What are the key things you have learnt along the way?

Hear from Taryn Lane of Hepburn Wind, Lawrence McIntosh of SolarShare and Rob Passey from COREM (Community Owned Renewable Energy Mullumbimby).

Community Participation Webinar Series

Presented by Dr Jarra Hicks from Community Power Agency in partnership with Sustainability Victoria’s Community Power Hub program.

These webinars will take you through the process of understanding and analysing how the design of your enterprise model impacts on how people participate in the project.

1. Introduction to designing community owned energy projects with strong community participation.

We cover why participation is so important for community owned renewable energy projects, and what important outcomes participation produces for projects and communities. We expand on the ‘Spectrum of Public Participation’ and introduce the ‘Participation Footprint’ as an effective visual tool for analysing participation. Features Australian case study examples.


2. Facilitating participation through economic arrangements.

Here we explain how the design of community owned renewable energy enterprises impacts on community participation. This webinar outlines the diverse range of economic arrangements that community energy groups draw on to deliver successful projects, including donations, volunteer time, in-kind contributions, share offers, grants, etc, and also what these different economic options mean for how people participate (or not) in the project. Features Australian case study examples.


3. Participation through governance structures.

Explaining different governance structures including both legal structure (e.g. cooperative, company, association) and “extra-legal” elements (e.g. policies, certifications, culture) and how this influences participation. Highlighting different possible choices around membership limits, voting rights, quorum, surplus distribution, etc. and what is possible within different legal structures. Also outlining options for protecting and embedding your mission and values over the lifetime of the project. Features Australian case study examples.

4. Facilitating participation through community engagement practices.

Community engagement practices are often the first thing people think of when facilitating participation in community owned renewable energy projects – and certainly it is a crucial part of the mix. We highlight different community engagement techniques (e.g. tours, workshops, visioning processes, forums, stalls, education programs, etc.) that can be used and when to do engagement. Also how to tailor community engagement to your local context and project type. Features Australian case study examples.


A faster and fairer transition to clean energy.

Webinar: A Faster & Fairer Transition

Community Power Agency was founded on the idea that while we are facing a climate crisis, it is possible to create a better world, powered by clean, democratically controlled renewable energy.

Over the last almost nine years we have been proud to work with communities across Australia to achieve this vision. In that time, we have learnt a lot about telling powerful stories for change. Our story tells the good news that long-term the transition to clean energy is inevitable and that millions of people around the world are getting on with it. Our story also puts out the following call to action – that together we must work to ensure that the clean energy transition is faster as the climate science demands and fairer as we should all demand.

Earlier in 2019, we were lucky to receive a grant from Climate Action Network Australia (CANA) to pilot a program to train clean energy advocates to tell this Faster and Fairer story. This went well, so we went one step further and offered this Faster & Fairer Webinar on the 4th of December 2019, to share the narrative we have developed that has helped inspire so many to action.
We have also made publicly available the script and power point presentation for any climate and clean energy advocates who want to be able to use and adapt this narrative for their work.

View webinar below.
To download the script click HERE
To download the PowerPoint presentation click HERE

This informative and inspirational webinar is Nicky Ison’s last hurrah for both Community Power Agency and Climate Action Network Australia before she moves on to other projects.

CPA Directors Elizabeth, Nicky & Jarra at a windfarm


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