$12.3 M for First Solar City in Central Australia

The Australian Government will provide more than AU$12 million [US$10 million] in funding to support the first Solar City in central Australia, the Minister for Environment Malcolm Turnbull, and the Minister for Industry Ian Macfarlane, announced this week.

Turnbull said the Alice Springs Solar City will install solar photovoltaic panels on 230 homes and businesses, 1000 solar hot water systems, roll-out 400 smart meters and provide solar installations to generate heat and power for the Alice Springs Airport, the Araluen Arts Precinct, the Town Pool and the Ilparpa Sewerage Treatment facility. “These Solar Cities will install over 3,200 solar photovoltaic panels on private and public housing and other buildings, conduct almost 7,000 energy efficiency consultations and assist more than 250,000 residents and businesses to learn how to reduce their energy use and save money,” Turnbull said. “The Alice Springs Solar City project joins Adelaide, Townsville and Blacktown as the first four Australian Solar Cities.” Macfarlane said the Alice Springs — Australia’s Solar Centre Consortium — will receive AU$12.3 million [US$10.3 million] through the Australian Government’s $75 million Solar Cities initiative and the Renewable Remote Power Generation Programme to help change the way individuals, communities, businesses and governments think about and use energy. The consortium will contribute an additional $17 million to the project. “Solar Cities is an innovative way to bring together solar technologies, energy efficiency, smart metering and better electricity pricing to create more energy sustainable communities,” Macfarlane said. “The level of interest shown in Solar Cities highlights that business and the broader community are keen to examine all options to determine the best energy mix for the future.”
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