The Whitehorse City Council is actioning an energy performance contract (EPC) worth $2 million, across eight of its current sites. It comes in a bid to improve energy efficiency across the region.
Situated 15km from Melbourne’s CBD, the Council is a major hub for both residential and commercial contexts. It plays home to more than 168,000 residents throughout its most popular suburbs – Nunawading, Box Hill and Surrey Hills.
The upgrades are likely to include the installation of solar panels, as well as improvements on lighting, heating and cooling equipment. These rollouts, as part of the EPC, will be seen across several sites, including:
- Box Hill Town Hall
- Aqualink Box Hill
- Eley Park Community Centre
- Whitehorse Operations Centre
- Whitehorse Civic Centre
- Whitehorse Recycling and Waste Centre.
What are the benefits of more solar in the city?
The project will officially allow the Council to save significant amounts of money (approximately $277,966) on electricity bills each year. This will also result in a reduction of emissions equating around 1343 tonnes annually.
Additionally, according to the Council, the contracts – which are increasingly being adopted by government and private sectors – will fulfil fixed price guarantee results. The savings are verified using a protocol that assess internationally approved measurements and verification.
Setting sights on a carbon-neutral target for Melbourne
Whitehorse City Council committed to transforming into a carbon-neutral city in March 2018, with the target to be hit by 2022.
Its efforts so far have included the installation of a solar power system across 32 sites, with a total capacity of more than 230kW.
The Council has already swapped out more than 8,000 street lights into LED versions, all since 2013. This has seen street light electricity reduced by 64%, and slashed emissions by more than 5,386.5 tonnes annually.
There are also several electric vehicles in the Council’s fleet. It recently welcomed the Renault Kangoo van, which is fully electric and is being used across cleaning services for the region.
Current electricity supply contracts for the region involves non-renewable energy but expires on June 30, 2020. The Council voted to join the Victorian Greenhouse Alliance’s Local Government Power Purchase Agreement (LGPPA) to seek out a supply contract for renewable energy moving forward. More than 67% of the current electricity consumption may be provided through this PPA for a duration of up to a decade.