Northern Ireland Community Energy (NICE) launched its share offer on 3rd March which remains open until 23rd March 2015.
NICE is a not-for-profit industrial provident mutual society, incorporated in NI as a community benefit society, and aims to install free solar PV panels on the roofs of 9-10 charity/community buildings across NI. NICE will pay for the free solar installations from the share issue, and will then earn income from the government's renewable obligation certificates (ROCS) and from the export and sale of the PV-generated energy. NICE aims to pay a 4% return to its members/shareholders, after which any surplus will be used to target fuel poverty measures and reinvest in other community energy saving and renewable energy generation initiatives.
NICE is staffed entirely by volunteers and there are no wages or salaries or other vested interests!
NICE operates on a one-member-one-vote basis, and in this way small investors have the same say in the running of the co-op as larger investors.
The first solar panel installation has already been completed at the premises of Mediation NI, a charity based in University Street in Belfast.