On 16 April Brecon and Radnorshire MP Roger Williams visited the community owned microhydro scheme in the Dyffryn Crawnon, Llangynidr in the Brecon Beacons.
The scheme started generating in March 2015 and can generate enough electricity in a year to meet the demand from 20 homes. The system was designed and built by TGVHydro – part of the award winning social enterprise The Green Valleys which works to support communities to develop community-owned renewable energy.
The scheme is owned and managed by Dyffryn Crawnon Green Energy CIC, a social enterprise that will use the profits from the scheme to promote energy saving and other carbon reduction measures in the local community.
The power is generated by taking a proportion of the flow from the Nant y Wenynen high above the turbine house, diverting it through a high pressure pipe and delivering the water to the turbine. Although no more than 18 litres per second can be taken from the stream the intake is 140 metres above the turbine house and the pressure will allow 18kW to be generated before returning the water to the stream.
The scheme has been supported by the Welsh Government’s Ynni’r fro programme supporting community renewables and has also received support from The Waterloo Foundation and Scottish Power’s Green Energy Fund.
Dyffryn Crawnon resident and community enterprise director Gil Chambers summed up the feelings of all of those involved in the scheme, “It has been a long journey, over 5 years since we first had the idea, and it has taken a lot of energy and determination – but we made it – we are all very excited. This scheme will be generating green electricity for decades to come and generating an income that we can use