Council’s commitment to zero net emissions has been given a boost with Council voting to fast track solar installations across the city.
Mayor of Hobsons Bay Cr Jonathon Marsden said the funding package will result in solar panels being installed on Council buildings, which is in addition to Council retrofitting existing buildings, installing LED street lighting and ensuring all future infrastructure is environmentally friendly.
“This is very exciting as we charge our way towards zero net emissions,” said Cr Marsden.
“Fast tracking these installations, along with Council’s other sustainable projects, will result in a 70% cut in Council’s energy consumption over the next five to 10 years. The solar program is expected to pay for itself within nine years,” he said.
The installation of solar panels on up to 43 community buildings, he explained, will result in a reduction of annual emissions of up to 2,700 tonnes, which is not only beneficial for the environment but also provides a significant cost saving for Council, the building’s occupants and the broader community.
Cr Marsden said the latest investment in sustainability complemented several recent Council initiatives, including the adoption of electric vehicles, the installation of a 50kW DC electric vehicle fast-charging station for community use and signing on to participate in the largest renewable energy power purchase agreement in Australia.
“Council stands together with our community in making the environment and sustainability a key priority,” said Cr Marsden.
“The ‘solar sprint’ that we are now undertaking aligns with the Hobsons Bay 2030 Community Vision and our Greenhouse Strategy and Council Plan 2017-21 which are aimed at creating a well-designed, well-maintained and environmentally sustainable place to be,” he said.
The solar installation project includes up to 43 buildings that Council owns and operates (such as the Civic Centre in Altona, Laverton Park Football and Cricket Pavilion, and Paisley Park Lacrosse Pavilion), as well as buildings that Council owns and leases or licences to third parties (such as Newport Gardens Early Years Centre, Altona Meadows Child Care Centre and Altona Kindergarten). These buildings are subject to a feasibility assessment and were prioritised based on a range of criteria including: energy use, roof condition, heritage restrictions, and major renewal or demolition plans.
The tender process for the works will take place over the remainder of 2019 with works taking place in 2020.