Queensland state schools are among the State Government’s largest energy consumers, spending on average $57 million each year, according to the Queensland Government.
Thankfully, thanks to a Federal Government initiative, renewable energy is becoming increasingly popular in schools who are investing in a variety of solar energy opportunities.
To help state schools offset the massive costs, the Government introduced the Australia Solar Schools Program, which aimed to help primary and secondary schools around the country take practical action to reduction emissions and electricity bills through installing solar power systems.
As part of the program, schools could be eligible for Federal Government grants of up to $50,000 under the National Solar School Program. This means a school could install a commercial-sized system with no out-of-pocket costs.
The program also aimed to provide educational benefits for students in learning about renewable energy and environmental change.
The objectives of the National Sustainable Schools Program was to:
- generate their own electricity from renewable sources;
- improve their energy efficiency and reduce their energy consumption;
- adapt to climate change by making use of rainwater collected from school roofs;
- provide educational benefits for school students and their communities; and
- support the growth of the renewable energy industry.
The program was quite advanced in its implementation, with more than 4600 project already approved for funding, according to the Queensland Government. The last competitive funding round for the program is currently underway.
At Big Sky Energy, we believe that by implementing energy efficient initiatives, schools could help prevent the onset of greenhouse gas emissions, whilst help build their profile as an environmentally friendly and ethical learning school.
The savings made from improved energy performance could be used to upgrade buildings and facilities around the school, as well as invest in greater resources for teachers.