Tathra Community Solar Farm Performance

Tathra Community Solar Farm – IMAGINE generating clean and green, renewable power!

The TCSF is a 30kW solar photovoltaic installation at the Tathra Sewerage Treatment Plant. It consists of 120 pollycrystalline 250W Trina solar panels and two 15 kW Fronius Symo 3 phase inverters grid connected. The panel elevation ange is 15 degrees.

In 2014 Bega Valley Shire Council (BVSC) formed a partnership with CEFE to develop one of Australia’s first community solar farms. Through organising multiple events and broader community engagement, CEFE has raised money over many years for local community organisations (e.g. RFS fire sheds, community halls, churches, surf clubs, preschools and a tourist venue) to install solar PV. To further this work CEFE approached Council to develop a joint venture which could be a beacon to other communities around Australia for climate change action. By combining passion and expertise, the Tathra Community Solar Farm project was conceived, built and opened in 2015. The project captures financial savings and reinvests these in other local solar projects – creating a win:win:win for CEFE, Council and the local community.

The project has received fantastic support from the local community and various organisations. Community donors, including local business, helped raise valuable funds for the project, while the Tathra Mountain Bike Enduro event provided significant support and funding to make the project a reality. The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage assisted and Bega Valley Shire Council contributed half of the project cost and project managed the design and construction.

In its first year of operation the savings in electricity costs amounted to $4379 This will be reinvested in further community solar projects.

20160101 Tathra Community Solar Farm performance

Tathra Community Solar Farm – IMAGINE generating clean and green, renewable power!

The TCSF is a 30kW solar photovoltaic installation at the Tathra Sewerage Treatment Plant. It consists of 120 pollycrystalline 250W Trina solar panels and two 15 kW Fronius Symo 3 phase inverters grid connected. The panel elevation ange is 15 degrees.

In 2014 Bega Valley Shire Council (BVSC) formed a partnership with CEFE to develop one of Australia’s first community solar farms. Through organising multiple events and broader community engagement, CEFE has raised money over many years for local community organisations (e.g. RFS fire sheds, community halls, churches, surf clubs, preschools and a tourist venue) to install solar PV. To further this work CEFE approached Council to develop a joint venture which could be a beacon to other communities around Australia for climate change action. By combining passion and expertise, the Tathra Community Solar Farm project was conceived, built and opened in 2015. The project captures financial savings and reinvests these in other local solar projects – creating a win:win:win for CEFE, Council and the local community.

The project has received fantastic support from the local community and various organisations. Community donors, including local business, helped raise valuable funds for the project, while the Tathra Mountain Bike Enduro event provided significant support and funding to make the project a reality. The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage assisted and Bega Valley Shire Council contributed half of the project cost and project managed the design and construction.

In its first year of operation the savings in electricity costs amounted to $4379 This will be reinvested in further community solar projects.

20151015 CEFE and BVSC Win Green Globe Award

CEFE'sPrue Kelly, BVSC's Daniel Murphy and Green Globe's Judging Panle Co-chair Matthew Bell at the awards ceremony in Sydney on October 15
CEFE’sPrue Kelly, BVSC’s Daniel Murphy and Green Globe’s Judging Panle Co-chair Matthew Bell at the awards ceremony in Sydney on October 15

CEFE was one of 17 organisations across the state to be awarded a prestigious Green Globe award at a ceremony in Sydney on Thursday October 15. Green Globes recognise excellence in initiatives to promote sustainability and protect the environment. The CEFE award, which was shared with Bega Valley Shire Council was in the category Excellence in Leadership and Innovation, sub-category Leadership in Climate Change.

Here is the citation:

This project, a partnership between the council and a local community group, Clean Energy for Eternity (CEFE), is Australia’s first community solar farm.

A 30 kilowatts ground-mounted solar installation, arrayed to form the word ‘IMAGINE’ can be clearly seen by passing flights. The energy generated by the panels offsets electricity used by the Tathra sewerage treatment plant and the savings are placed into a fund managed by CEFE for future community projects. This approach not only ensures that these projects are efficient and well-targeted, but maintains a clear community connection and engagement throughout the solar farm’s lifetime.

CEFE and BVSC has signd an MOU which will ensure that the the ‘value’ of  the donated panels, in the form of electricity payments that BVSC no longer needs to pay for grid power to supply the treatment plant will be returned to CEFE to fund further community solar projects in the shire.  The Tathra Community Solar Farm is the first project where CEFE has collaborated with BVSCj but is ust the most recent of many many initiatives that CEFE has undertaken entirely on its own or in collaboration with the Tathra Enduro, to equip surf clubs, pre-schools, RFS shed, community halls and churches since 2007.

 

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