Page last updated at 10:36 GMT, Friday, 17 October 2008 11:36 UK

Beacons green project scoops 20k

Brecon Beacons (library picture from Brecon Beacons National Park)
Green Valleys aims to restore small hydroelectric schemes in the park

A project helping fight climate change in a national park has scooped 20,000 by reaching the final of a 1m UK-wide competition.

The Green Valleys scheme in the Brecon Beacons is the only finalist from Wales in The Big Green Challenge.

Green Valleys aims to restore small hydroelectric schemes in the park.

It is also helping people reduce fuel bills through community energy saving initiatives, and plans to develop and restore peat bogs in the area.

During the last 10 years, Green Valleys has redeveloped eight formerly redundant hydroelectric schemes, and has identified another 16 it would like to re-establish.

'Carbon emissions'

Grenville Ham, who leads the Green Valleys project, said: "Reaching the final 10 in the Big Green Challenge means we are in a position to invest in further community-owned and run hydroelectric installations.

"If we win we can invest in a range of projects to slash carbon emissions across the region."

Twenty-one small communities in the national park are part of the Green Valleys scheme.

The National Endowment for Science, Technology and Arts (Nesta) competition, aims to reduce carbon emissions by 60% or more.

Nesta's chief executive Jonathan Kestenbaum said: "The Green Valleys in the Brecon Beacons is a powerful contender for the 1m prize."

The 10 finalists beat off competition from 350 entrants.

The winner with the most imaginative and successful idea will be announced by The Big Green Challenge in November next year.




SEE ALSO
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