A BRAND new share offer has been launched to help raise £363,000 for the installation of solar panels.

Reading Community Energy Society (RCES) is giving residents the opportunity to make a return on their investments as part of the scheme.

Reading Borough Council recently declared a climate emergency, recognising the need for sources of renewable energy.

Councillor Rachel Eden, a director at RCES, said: “The RCES not only offers the possibility of a healthy financial return for investors, but through the installation of many hundreds of solar panels in Reading and beyond, saves tonnes of CO2 emissions which in the longer term will help the town achieve its aim of creating a carbon neutral Reading just over a decade from now.”

Since its launch just under three years ago, the scheme has already installed hundreds of solar panels on community buildings across Reading.

Since opening in late February, the new share offer has already raised more than £100,000.

Fellow director, councillor Liz Terry, added: “Becoming a shareholder of RCES will help Reading to rise to the challenge of dealing with the climate emergency which exists.

"By investing directly in local clean, renewable energy generation, we can play our part in forging a path for the future and start to unlock the potential for Reading to become carbon neutral by 2030.”

The council has saved more than £7 million in energy costs in the last 10 years by cutting its carbon footprint and has met a target to reduce its carbon footprint by 50 per cent three years early.

Visit: readingenergy.coop/share-offer-2019 before March 29.