Council’s first large scale commissioning of solar panels on one of its properties has been hailed as a success, even in the shorter days of the year.
The 32.3 kW system was installed on the roof of Kiama Library in mid-April, and is expected to reduce energy consumption at the facility by 20 per cent.
“We need a full year to see just how effective the new system is,” says Council’s Manager of Environment & Health, Paul Czulowski.
“Any savings will be returned to the Revolving Energy Reserve until the capital cost has been paid for, thus helping to fund more panels across other Council properties.”
The next systems to be rolled out will be for the new Blue Haven Bonaira and the new library in Gerringong.
Structural load issues are making installation at the Leisure Centre problematic, and investigations are continuing about the impact of sea spray on any system at The Pavilion.
A small system is already operating at the Council Administration Building, but it will not be expanded until the fate of the building and site is decided.
“We are waiting for the price of batteries to come down before we take the next step and invest in them,” says Mr Czulowski.
Installing solar power was one of Council’s commitments when joining the Cities Power Partnership.