Facing a dedicated and fixed budget, the municipality of Lorient found another way to develop renewable energies thanks to people’s financing.
What is the principle of this setting up? It is based on two elements: self-consumption and rental. Self-consumption: the electricity of solar panels is directly consumed by the buildings on which they are installed. This method of using photovoltaic electricity is particularly suitable for buildings that operate during the day: schools, administrations, companies, etc. Leasing: the company Oncimè, via a public procurement procedure, offered the city of Lorient a leasing contract. The city pays an annual rent, and in exchange, has the right to use the solar panels as it sees fit. The most interesting way to use these panels is of course to position them on the roof of your buildings to produce electricity! In the end, the price of renting solar panels makes it possible to obtain electricity cheaper than « grid » electricity, purchased from suppliers operating power plants in France. The city of Lorient has been particularly sensitive to Oncimè’s civic project: the shareholding is oriented towards the inhabitants of the territory, « one person = one voice » governance is part of the philosophy of the social and solidarity economy, and the Oncimé company also ensures, every year, in equipped buildings, activities around photovoltaics and renewable energies for schoolchildren and city officials. The buildings now equipped: the Town Hall, the Kersabiec scoal group, the Apprentice Training Centre and, during the construction work, the René Guy Cadou school.

Resources needed

Rental price inferior to green electricity from grid. Need for a local technician capable to organize implementation of solar pannels. Tender procedure: http://agenda21.lorient.fr/dokuwiki/doku.php/magdebourg-technical-workshop:documents-for-solar-pannels-crowdfunding

Evidence of success

The buildings now equipped: the Town Hall, the Kersabiec school group, the Apprentice Training Centre and, the René Guy Cadou school.
For the municipality, it represents 100kWp of new solar installations, generating ~110MWh/year

The private sector just began to use citizen services, with a brand new installation (sumer 2019) on a bilogical food shopping center. This installation is about 36 kWp.

Difficulties encountered

Build a "legal" Tender procedure (overhelmed!)

Potential for learning or transfer

Huge potential as the financial model is easily reproductible.
Main institution
Ville de Lorient
Bretagne, France
Start Date
December 2016
End Date


Pierre CRÉPEAUX Please login to contact the author.