Reasons for Choosing Solar
  • Last updated:
  • 23 Jul 2017

In 2009 council investigated 23 different energy options for the Sunshine Coast as part of its Energy Transition Project. Solar energy and energy efficiency were identified as the best options to pursue. Extensive investigation also examined rooftop solar to offset ongoing electricity requirements of the community facilities and services provided by council. However, a utility scale solar farm was found to be the most sustainable future energy option, and offered millions of dollars in savings to council over a 30-year period.

The options explored were:

  • Wind – it was decided the wind resource is not sufficient
  • Biomass – has been used in the past at the Nambour sugar mill and is a potential opportunity for the future
  • Landfill gas – is installed at council’s landfill facilities at Nambour and Caloundra
  • Wave and tidal power – were in the early stages of commercialisation
  • Solar thermal power stations – is a potential opportunity for the future

Other important energy initiatives council is pursuing

Energy demand management offers benefits in the form of lower network charges by managing the network charge applied to council’s facilities. Council is investigating several options to manage peak demand at the facilities including: 

  • managing peak load by supplying electricity from an alternative source such as batteries or rooftop solar during these peak load times
  • end use energy efficiency and changing the amount of electricity demand at peak load times. 

 Continual improvement and implementation of the following energy efficiency measures is reducing council’s electricity costs:

  • Transition to efficient lighting 
  • Upgrading inefficient pumps/motors
  • Filtration system upgrades
  • Implementing solar hot water systems
  • HVAC upgrades and optimisation
  • Building envelope sealing 
  • Using timers and sensors Power Factor Correction

More information

For more information, please email council's Solar Farm Project Team solarfarm@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au.