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Green injection for the borough
A £1MILLION pot of money will be set aside by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council to fund flagship eco-friendly projects in the borough.
The sum, currently sitting in the council’s reserve accounts, will be used to form a new Green Investment reserve.
The money will be available from April providing the creation of the cash pot is rubber stamped by the Conservative-led Cabinet next Tuesday.
The money will be used to invest in green projects that cut carbon emissions, reduce waste, and protect the natural environment.
Deputy borough council leader Councillor Ranil Jayawardena welcomed the plan. He said: “This is a good example of us using money for the green agenda, and reducing the carbon footprint of the borough.”
News of the investment fund comes two weeks after a £50,000 test project to install electricity-generating solar panels on three council-owned was unanimously approved by the full council.
The photovoltaic panels will be installed at Whiteditch Depot, in Sherborne Road, as well as Maidenwell Pavilion and Down Grange Barns at the Down Grange Sports Complex.
Cllr Jayawardena said the administration will seek to use the Green Investment reserve to fund similar projects.
He also hinted that the council would draw on the money to make revamped business park Basing View “one of the greenest in Europe”.
“We have an aspiration that Basing View will be a green business park,” he said. “That could be by using technology such as combined heat and power and more solar PV cells.”
He added: “This (reserve) will provide the money to make this a reality.”
Council leader Cllr Clive Sanders said investment in borough green schemes is a long-term project for the administration.
“This £1m gets us off the ground and up and running in this area,” he said. “And if there is more that can be done, we will increase the money available. At this stage, it would be daft to put in £15m without an investment plan.”
The reserve will be created with the adoption of the Conservative-led administration’s four-year Council Plan which needs to be approved by Cabinet on January 29, and then by the full council.