Low Carbon Gordano membership survey 2016

You will all be aware of the many changes that have been made by the government in the months since out last share offer. These, combined with other background factors mean that we need to adapt if Low Carbon Gordano is going to continue to grow and prosper. These include:

  • a huge reduction in the Feed-in-Tariff support for solar projects, especially ground-mounted ones like Moorhouse and Ham Farm. (Note: these schemes are not affected by this as the changes are not retrospective.)
  • the removal of EIS (or its successor SITR) tax relief from community owned energy projects.
  • The world-wide collapse in energy prices, which has reduced the price we can sell our electricity for.
  • An ongoing period of low inflation which has affected our expectations of future income.

Fortunately, none of these changes threaten the basic soundness of our existing projects, although continued low inflation and electricity prices may mean we need to consider the level of interest paid to investors.

All of this means that we are currently engaged in a thorough going review of our approach to the further growth of the society and are looking at a range of investment possibilities for the next 1-3 years. We believe that it is important to us to continue to grow at a sensible rate both to bring more renewable energy into community ownership, to make more money available for community benefit, and to be more sustainable in the long term. It would also make more electricity available for domestic users through Mongoose Energy Ltd.

It would be extremely helpful to this process if you would complete the survey of members' views – it should take no more than 10 or so minutes. We apologise that a few of the questions cover the same issues that were included in the survey many of you helpfully completed for Bath University recently but these are needed for completeness and will help us build on the information provided by the earlier survey.

We are offering a prize of £50 to one lucky person who completes the survey – we will choose the name randomly at our board meeting on 26 May so make sure you respond before then.

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* 1. What were the most important factors influencing your decision to invest in LCG?

  not important slightly important quite important very important
Supporting development of renewable energy projects
Supporting the development of community owned renewable energy projects
Supporting renewable energy projects with wildlife and biodiversity benefits
Investing in a local community enterprise
Securing a reasonable financial return
Securing EIS tax relief
Securing other tax benefits (inheritance tax relief, capital gains tax relief)

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* 2. How many times have you invested in LCG?

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* 3. How much have you invested in total?

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* 4. How did you first find out about the share offers that you invested in?

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* 5. How likely would you be to invest in a future LCG project (assuming that you thought the project to be sound) if the expected financial returns were as follows?
(Please note, as with existing projects, returns are not guaranteed but are dependent on
performance. Your responses to this question will help us decide whether future possible projects are worth our active consideration.)

  Very unlikely to invest Probably would not invest Quite likely to invest Very likely to invest
Non-transferable Shares (repayable at cost over 20 years) offering 6-7%
Non-transferable Shares (repayable at cost over 20 years) offering 5%
Non-transferable Shares (repayable at cost over 20 years) offering 3-4% above annual RPI
Non-transferable Shares (repayable at cost over 20 years) offering 2-3% above annual RPI
Bonds repayable in 3-5 years offering 4-5% annual return
Bonds repayable in 10 years offering 4-5% annual return

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* 6. What has been your experience of being a member of LCG so far? Please select the statement that most closely reflects your experience of each option.

  Consistently poor Often poor Often good Consistently good No experience
Members' meetings, including AGMs
Emailed newsletters
LCG website
General administration of e.g. share certificates, meeting invitations, interest payments
Other communications

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* 7. What is your view of the amount of communication you receive from LCG?