Yackandandah Health will be celebrating the connection of their new solar installation on Friday 26th February at 10:00am
Indigo Shire Mayor Councillor, James Trenery, will cut the ribbon for what is a significant solar installation. TRY Yackandandah will be presenting YHS with their Solar Champion Golden YAK Award to be displayed at the front of the facility.
This is a milestone in the goal of making Yackandandah 100% renewable and is a celebration of a community working together.
Below is some more detailed information:
Promoting Health with Clean Energy
Yackandandah Health is the latest community service to join a clean energy revolution taking place in country Victoria.
Today’s connection of a 90kW solar-panel system at Yackandandah Health Service (YHS) will save the community-owned service $1 million over the next 25 years and reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 115 tonnes annually – the equivalent of taking 23 cars permanently off the road.
The project to install 348 solar panels on the roof of the health service’s facility heralds a new high-water mark in the success of Totally Renewable Yackandandah (TRY) – a volunteer-run community group which is aiming to power its small Victorian country town with 100% renewable electricity by 2022.
YHS CEO Annette Nuck said saving money on power made good business sense, while reducing pollution would deliver better health outcomes as outlined by the World Health Organisation and Australian Medical Association, who both highlight the urgent threat climate change poses to public health.
“The changes we’re making help stabilize the cost of providing our health services. If we spend less on energy, then we can spend more on health care,” Ms Nuck said.
“At the same time, we really want to pull down the carbon cost of doing business and strengthen community efforts to switch to 100% renewable electricity.”
Together with the solar panels, YHS has replaced 276 light fittings with low maintenance LED lights, with another 300 to replace. These energy efficiency measures are just the start of a program to revolutionise energy use on site. Modelling is underway to map improvements to air conditioning and hot water systems, as well as a broader goal to reduce waste across the facility.
TRY has raised $5000, which will be loaned for the energy efficiency improvements. Again, this loan will be repaid with savings in power bills and when paid back, will be ploughed back into other community energy programs.
TRY President Matthew Charles-Jones said the group’s goal of shifting 100% of the town’s power to renewable sources was a considerable step closer thanks to the YHS project.
“They demonstrate that once a successful business recognizes the multiple benefits of clean energy to its bottom line as well as its clients it is an easy decision to make. These changes will deliver cost and energy savings from the proven, reliable and scalable technologies of renewable electricity generation.”
The solar installation was installed by Country Solar, a local firm with extensive experience in the installation of domestic and commercial systems, including Benella Hospital. The system at Yackandandah Health has the capacity to function independently from the grid once battery technology moves forward. Daily reports on energy generation can be accessed online and are monitored closely by Yackandandah Health and Country Solar. Jeremy Mansfield, director, has also offered an incentive of $100 per kw to Yackandandah Health for anyone who installs solar on their premises and mentions Yackandandah Health.