Welsh Government
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Minister visits model green village

Environment Minister, John Griffiths has visited the Llangattock Green Valleys project in the Brecon Beacons National Park to see the latest sustainable developments in this energy-efficient community. The project was set up in 2008 with the aim of establishing Llangattock as a carbon negative community by 2015.

The Minister toured the village to see a range of sustainable projects that are already helping Llangattock to work towards its goal. Approximately 1,300 people live in the area.

During the visit the Minister learned about the community’s integrated approach to sustainability, with initiatives including:

  • monthly litter picks (money earned from recycling the litter goes to help the local school)
  • a thriving allotment society and woodland group (which together are working to reduce food and woodfuel miles)
  • an innovative community group-buying scheme for renewable energy technologies that has already seen homes and business in Llangattock and beyond fitted with solar PV.
  • energy efficiency improvements for the school and community hall that have helped to  significantly reduce energy use over the past two years. The school has already seen 51% reduction in its gas bill for the three months up to the end of November 2011, compared with the same period in 2010.

In addition, the Minister learned how Llangattock Green Valleys is proceeding with five local micro-hydro schemes and is in talks with the local Glanusk Estate to develop an anaerobic digestion project fuelled largely by grass clippings harvested on the Estate.

The Minister said:

“The Welsh Government is committed to supporting communities to live within their environmental limits and take action  on climate change. Our Programme for Government details the actions we are undertaking to deliver these improvements. I am delighted to see the village working together in a sustainable way to meet the long-term challenges we all face.

“I was particularly interested to learn more about Llangattock Green Valleys’ plans for an anaerobic digestion plant that could use grass cuttings to produce renewable energy in the form of biomethane for injection into the gas grid, along with high-quality fertiliser.”

The project is being supported by the Welsh Government’s Ynni’r Fro programme, which uses European Structural Funds along with Welsh Government match funding to offer social enterprises grant aid, loans and free, independent, hands-on advice and information to help social enterprises develop their own community-scale renewable energy schemes across Wales.

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