Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Port Stephens expands solar effort

NSW

Port Stephens Council has announced it will install solar panels on 14 community buildings as part of a commitment to achieve a carbon neutral Council by 2025.

Mayor Ryan Palmer says Council was investing in initiatives that protect the natural beauty of Port Stephens so it can be enjoyed by future generations.

“The installation of these solar photovoltaic systems on community building across Port Stephens is part of our broader commitment to driving sustainability through investment in renewable energy options,” said Mayor Palmer.

“We’ve already installed solar at our Administration Building, Raymond Terrace library, Tomaree library, community centres linked to Rural Fire Service (RFS) stations and Salamander Waste Transfer Station. This latest round includes four sports complexes, all three aquatic centre, the Visitor Information Centre, the Nelson Bay Depot and Fingal Surf Club.

“We aren’t immune to the impacts of climate change. Increased sea level rise, intensity and frequency of storms, plus bushfire and rainfall patterns, are challenging the way we manage our environment,” Mayor Palmer said.

The Port Stephens draft Community Strategic Plan 2022 – 2032 presented at yesterday’s Council meeting outlined its environmental plans.

“By installing these solar photovoltaic systems on 14 community buildings, we’re saving $91,920 on our yearly energy costs and reducing the total energy usage on these facilities annually by 25%,” said Asset Section Manager, John Maretich.

“As we continue to implement actions from our 4 year Delivery Program to achieve carbon neutrality, we’ll continue to work with external funding bodies including the NSW Government to seek financial assistance,” he said.

Council says the solar panels are expected to be installed by mid-August.

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