Frequently Asked Questions

The information below is designed to give simple answers to some common questions.

The investment opportunity

According to our financial model which is based on tendered costs, the early year returns should be 5%pa. The return rate increases with RPI over the 20 year life of the project. Interest payments are capped at 5%.

Returns are entirely dependent on the profits earned by Edinburgh Solar. The financial projections used in the Offer document are based on assumptions and the judgement of Energy4All about future performance, but actual outcomes could differ from the projections shown.

Is Edinburgh sunny enough?

The simple answer is yes. The estimated average annual solar energy per square meter in Edinburgh is between 850-950kWh and our long summer days give us plenty of daylight to convert into electricity even this far north.

We’ve used historical sunlight figures for Edinburgh in our calculations and while it’s not as sunny as the south east of England – it works! We’ve also selected south facing roofs and many of them are flat which means we can optimise orientation.

Edinburgh Solar Projected Returns

Each year, after operation and administration costs have been covered, share interest will be paid to members. The return on share capital will be capped at 5%, which will rise with inflation (RPI) each year. The surplus funds generated after payment of share interest will be allocated to the community benefit fund. After year six, members will have some of their share capital paid back each year along with their share interest. By year 20, members will have all their original investment returned and the panels will revert to the Council. All financial detail is provided in the share offer document. You are advised to read this carefully before investing

Will the Co-op get involved in other activities?

Edinburgh Solar is a Benefit for the Community Society and the project will enable the creation of a community fund, estimated to be approximately £1 million over the life of the project. Edinburgh Solar is open to suggestions from Members on taking on other projects. Members will decide if other projects are to be developed.

Can I get my money out early?

Currently, Members do not have the right to withdraw Shares and no withdrawals will be permitted during the initial three years period as this could prejudice tax relief for all Co-op Members. However, the Board has discretion to permit Shares to be withdrawn at a later date and in accordance with any conditions the Board may decide.

What happens if I die?

A member’s shares in the Co-op are treated just like any other asset if someone dies.

What are the environmental benefits?

Each installation will result in a reduction of CO2 emissions which will help the schools meet their sustainability targets. We are also hoping it will encourage more awareness of energy, both generation and energy efficiency, within the local community.