Minister opens first-of-kind community-shared solar grid
SEANZ Media Release – 26 September 2019
Minister of Energy opens first-of-kind community-shared solar grid at Morningside Precinct
Minister of Energy and Resources, Hon. Megan Woods, today launched a community-shared solar grid at Morningside retail and hospitality precinct in Auckland.
The system is the first of its kind in New Zealand and provides a unified sustainable power solution for the 11 separate businesses at Morningside allowing them to reap the benefits of solar energy and reduce their energy rates and carbon footprint collectively.
The opening took place at earth-friendly eatery Kind Café, one of a range of eco-friendly enterprises in the precinct who share the site, share some values around sustainability, and now share in the benefits of sustainable energy.
Minister Woods officially opened the system by unveiling a display module that shows the solar generation from the system and the load from the businesses in the precinct.
Sustainable Energy Association (SEANZ) Board Director Rebecca George says “this project represents the best of what solar energy can enable, reducing emissions, reducing energy costs, and building community through shared energy resources.
“We commend the precinct developers, Rod Ballenden and Nat Cheshire, as well as system integrator and owner Sunergise, for having the vision to embed community energy and sustainable practices into everyday commercial business” says Ms George.
The retail and hospitality centre is powered by a 75kWp PV system comprising 250 solar panels.
Morningside precinct is credited with bringing a new and positive energy of its own kind into the area.
Precinct developer Rod Ballenden says “solar makes business sense and is saving the businesses in the precinct hundreds of dollars a week in energy costs.”
Sunergise CEO Paul Makumbe says “We are delighted that businesses like Morningside are now recognising the economic benefits of solar energy. It’s an exciting time for the industry as investors like Todd Energy, who are backing Sunergise, are recognising the mainstream benefits of solar too.” Paul adds, “To meet projected demand, New Zealand needs to double it’s electricity generating capacity. Solar and Sunergise are well-positioned to meet the challenge sustainably.”