Solar for Darnum Reserve
improving sustainability of local community groups.
Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) project manager Mick Dortmans said more than 30 public buildings and sport and recreation facilities run by volunteer committees of management in Baw Baw, Latrobe City and Wellington Shires are eligible for this funding, which is being rolled out in stages across those shires.
“Another 23 Gippsland halls and reserves are getting ready for their solar power installations and others may still be added to the list,” he said.
“Local contractors are installing the systems and they also provide any after-installation care needed.
“DELWP will install solar analytics at each site to monitor the new systems and how they’re operating.”
Flynn community hall, which is utilised by several community groups, had its power bills reduced by 65 per cent after installation of a 3.6 kw system on the hall in September.
At Gormandale Recreation Reserve a 20kw system was installed, plus a smart switch for their many hot water systems so they only heat during the day when the solar system is generating electricity.
“Just switching the hot water has reduced the cost of water heating by 50 per cent,” Mr Dortmans said.
“And at Toongabbie Rec Reserve, the committee of management has already saved money by using solar energy and estimated savings over 12 months will be 65 per cent of preinstallation costs.
“Their system will pay for itself in four years.”