Derby is a remote town in Western Australia and when your town is bathed in sunlight, you’d be crazy not to consider opportunities to capture it and reduce energy costs. That’s exactly what Derby has done by deploying solar and battery which they expect will save the town $130,000 a year on electricity costs.
Government-owned Horizon Power recently marked an important milestone of 13 Shire of Derby/West Kimberley buildings now receiving energy-efficient upgrades.
A $5.2 million Solar, Battery and Smart Streetlights project is a part of Horizon Power’s $75 million Renew the Regions program, aimed at stimulating regional economies and improving access to renewable energy in the regions.
The renewables push includes 283kW of solar panels, 40kW of which creates a solar shade at the Derby Memorial Swimming Pool.
Horizon Power engaged Derby’s Aboriginal-owned solar installers, Remote Solar Solutions, to install 283kW of rooftop solar across the Derby Shire’s public buildings, saving the Shire an average of $130,000 per year on electricity costs and reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by more than 230 tonnes annually.
The streets of Derby will also be upgraded with 1,100 smart LED streetlights to significantly improve night-time visibility and safety for pedestrians and drivers. This connected solution allows Horizon Power to monitor and respond to faults and outages in real-time.
The project milestones were marked by the Minister for Energy, Hon Bill Johnston, and Horizon Power CEO, Stephanie Unwin beneath the Derby pool’s new custom-made solar shade, which was officially unveiled last night as Horizon Power Hut.
Horizon Power CEO Stephanie Unwin said the energy provider is committed to working closely with communities and customers to provide innovative customer solutions like those delivered on this project and help support the communities where it operates.
“This project has provided Horizon Power with an opportunity to partner with the Shire, local contractors and the community to give back something that makes a real difference, and which demonstrates we are serious about delivering energy solutions for regional growth and vibrant communities.
I am incredibly proud that we are able to deliver these meaningful outcomes and renewable energy solutions in support of Derby’s vibrant community.”Horizon Power CEO Stephanie Unwin
The final stage of the project will see 364kW of solar installed at the Derby Hospital and the deployment of a community battery to ensure the hospital can benefit from solar without impacting the ability of the local community to access renewable energy.
Horizon Power expects the project to be completed in early 2022.