National Geographic

VOICES Voices Icon Ideas and Insight From Explorers

Menu

Sydney launches $4.3M project to boost renewable energy

The C40 city of Sydney has announced the launch of the largest building-mounted solar project in Australia, committing to install solar photovoltaic panels across 30 sites citywide, beginning with the Sydney Park pavilion. With a total peak electrical capacity of 1.25 megawatts (MW), the solar project is expected to reduce the city’s carbon pollution by as much as 2,250 tonnes.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the project was an important step in reaching the city’s environmental goals:

“We are committed to tackling climate change and driving down carbon pollution. The City has one of the most ambitious targets of any government in Australia – a 70 per cent reduction in pollution and 30 per cent of electricity from renewable sources by 2030.The City is getting on with the job. These solar panels produce no pollution when generating electricity – unlike coal-fired power, which is responsible for 80 per cent of the city’s carbon pollution.”

What’s more, the project economics are compelling, thanks to steep reductions in the cost of solar panels and favorable pricing on any surplus power they produce. As a result, the City was able to contract nearly twice the amount of solar PV for less than half the cost than originally envisaged in 2010; through electricity sales, it expects to lower the cost of cutting carbon pollution by a further 50 per cent, a city official said.

The solar project is in keeping with the sustainability objectives specified in Sydney’s Sustainable Sydney 2030 Vision to promote a green, global, and connected city. As part of this vision, Sydney identified the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by building a network of green infrastructure to provide clean energy and reduce energy demands.

To read the full press release about the project launch, click here.