20080503 Jindabyne surf club goes solar

45921c60deDENISE DION Summit Sun

By now the meter should be starting to wind back for the Jindabyne Surf and Sailing Clubs after the installation of solar panels, a solar hot water system and a wind turbine on Tuesday.

Driven by the Jindabyne Yabbies Surf Lifesaving Club and Dr Matthew Nott from Clean Energy for Eternity (CEFE) the events that raised the money for the renewable energy installation, were huge successes in their own right.

The Lake Jindabyne 7km Big Swim was part of the Flowing Festival in February and attracted wide attention and support for the clean energy project.

The Jindabyne Yabbies Club is only the second, Tathra was the first, to get clean energy installed by already other clubs along the south coast are involved in similar fund raisers.

The installation not only provides a strong statement of the community’s commitment to renewable energy but is saving the club money too.

Steve Garrett from Pyramid Power, the company that carried out the installation, said that the club should never have to pay another electricity bill again because credits in the summer would pay for electricity used in the winter months.

The money saved will be put towards the next project, which is getting water tanks installed.

Yabbies President, Steve Cavanagh, was delighted with the community support. The project raised $19,500 and received a government rebate of $13,000.

An open day is planned for Saturday May 3 at 12.30 when there will be plenty of action and demonstrations on the water including a dragon boat challenge, a barbecue organised by the Jindabyne Lions and a chance to see the renewable energy system at work.

20080715 Moruya surf club goes solar

94c4ef5c06The hardworking volunteers from Moruya Surf Lifesaving Club, together with contractor Clay Stafford, installed the first of the renewable energy systems on the north facing wall of the club house on the last weekend in June 2008. The new Photovoltaic Cells with a 2KW capacity that are now providing energy for the club is the first stage of the installation project. Solar Hot Water systems are on their way as is a wind turbine to boost the energy supply. Moruya Surf Club representative Mike Hallahan is thrilled that installation has begun. “It’s great that the Surf Club will be able to reduce its energy bills and the money saved can be used for much needed things such as equipment to support our Life Savers, Nippers and members” he says.

The entire project has been spearheaded by a joint collaboration of local climate action group Clean Energy for Eternity and Lifesaving Australia (through the local branch . A swim paddle event held on the Moruya River in May saw over 100 hundred competitors brave the cool water and raise money for the Lifesaving Energy Project by gaining sponsorship from the wider community. Local businesses have also been very supportive. “It is becoming very apparent that the general population want to do all they can to reduce our impact on Climate Change.” Local co-ordinator for Clean Energy for Eternity Gabriele Harding says. “By seeing public buildings install renewable energy systems shows leadership and forward thinking at a local level.”

A date is yet to be set for the official opening of the new renewable systems.

20081019 Narooma Lifesaving Energy launched

9d2a751cefTHE Narooma Surf Lifesaving Club is now totally energy neutral and should even be putting power back into the national power grid.
Sunday saw the grand launch of the solar panels and wind turbine recently installed at clubhouse thanks to money raised from this year’s Life Saving Energy Big Swim and contributions from the Eurobodalla Shire Council and the Federal Government.

Representatives from the Clean Energy for Eternity, including founder Matthew Nott, members of the Narooma Surf Lifesaving Club, helpers and generous donators all enjoyed a barbecue lunch and drinks on the deck.

The weather was perfect and both the solar panels and wind turbine were hard at work, with special boxes inside the club giving read outs on how much power was being generated.

Matthew Nott said Narooma was the fourth club in the region to be energy neutral with the others being Jindabyne, Moruya and Tathra.
Pambula and Broulee should be joining them within months making all the South Coast clubs clean and green. There are also funds for Bermagui, as soon as they can build a clubhouse.

“We would like to see all 305 surf clubs across Australia join in and there is already talk of a national big swim to raise funds,” Mr Nott said.

“This is a community campaign with some council support and it turning into a national campaign, so people in the south east should be really proud.”

Of $50,000 cost, about $20,000 was raised from the Big Swim, Eurobodalla Shire Council kicked in $7500 and there was a 50 per cent rebate from the Federal Government.

Installed was a 2kW solar panel, twice the capacity of the Tathra panel, and a 400-watt wind turbine.

The devices had already made the club at least $40 and club members were counting on the devices reducing the club’s $1200 to $1500 a year power bill.
Once again, the club president Steve Dobson said members would like to thank all those involved in organising the Lifesaving Energy Big Swim, entrants, supporters and kind donators for making the project such a success.

The next Big Swim, this time from the bridge to Bar Beach only, will be held on Sunday, April 5 and will proudly remain named “The Lifesaving Energy Big Swim”.
In keeping with the project to aim for energy efficiency and minimising the carbon footprint, it is envisaged that next year’s funds will go towards installing solar hot water and energy efficient lighting throughout the clubhouse.

Councillor Chris Kowal said he was proud of the council decision to provide funds and now the benefits were being seen first hand.

“I’m proud to see Narooma come on line,” Clr Kowal said.

Mr Nott said the current calculations were that sea level could potentially rise 3mm a year.

“Rising sea levels will impact the entire South Coast,” he said.

“It’s a matter of survival that we tackle this – it will have a huge impact on small towns, their economies and real estate.”

20091206 Pambula surf club goes solar

3dde808a75Harnessing energy from the sun is paying dividends for Pambula Surf Life Saving Club with their newly installed rooftop solar system saving valuable funds whenever the sun is shining.

Federal Government funding under the Solar Homes and Communities Plan totaling $13,400; community sponsorship from South East Fibre Exports, Eden, of $6,600; and an additional $6,600 from Bega Valley Shire Council in the 2009/2010 budget, has covered the solar power system; installed by Pyramid Power late last December.

“We had little idea of what to expect with the system, but are very impressed following our first quarter of operation with the system producing just over 800Kw hours of electricity”, club president Donald Hay explained.

“The 2Kw solar power system produces enough energy to power the building whenever the sun is shining, with a little over to go back into the grid.

“Considering the building is drawing power to run fridges, freezers, security lighting, extraction fans and alarm systems through the day with the addition of any lights that go on when the building is occupied; we are saving a lot of money by having this system”.

Pambula SLSC is one of 330 life saving clubs in Australia being encouraged to utilise renewable energy through the “Life Saving Energy” program, originally conceived by local group, Clean Energy For Eternity. In this shire, the group organised the Council to fund 50% of systems for clubs at Pambula, Tathra and Bermagui, with the remaining funds being raised through community fundraising, or in our case, business sponsorship.

“Pambula had the option of installing 1Kw of solar panels and another 1Kw wind turbine system; however we chose to double the solar panels giving us 2Kw of solar generating potential.

“We are fortunate that the Federal Government, South East Fibre Exports and Bega Valley Shire Council have backed this particular installation system which equates to cutting our energy bill by more than a quarter; as well as being great for the environment”.

The solar power system is just one of many energy saving principles incorporated in the new life saving club at Pambula Beach.

“The club has three Quantum hot water systems which use the heat pump principle generating hot water from atmospheric pressure. This system reduces our electricity consumption by a third over conventional electric systems.

“All lighting, wherever possible, incorporates energy saving globes and low voltage equipment; our showers are all on timers to reduce water consumption, and the exhaust fan and lighting systems in the toilet areas are all linked to movement activated switches on timers to reduce the likelihood of leaving lights on.

“We have plans to place large underground tanks to harness rainwater that would normally end up in the ocean for use in toilets and for irrigation and washing rescue equipment.

“In the future, the club will look at expanding our solar power generating potential, especially if additional government and community funding become available for such projects. There is certainly a lot more room on the roof to harness renewable energy”, Donald concluded.

Don Hay

Pambula surf club captain