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Solar Power not Snags!

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Do you have kids in child care?  If you answered yes, you know how expensive it can be.  You are probably also intimately aware of the ongoing need for fund raising …. sausage sizzles, raffles, chocolate drives, book clubs and the list goes on.

If you are on a Child Care Centre committee you’ll also know that fundraising is always on the agenda.   I had a quick look at a rural Child Care Centre when my daughter was enrolled there and I could see how they could instantly fund raise $400 a month, that’s $4800 per year, without a single snag hitting the BBQ plate!    The answer … solar power!

The centre was not heavily reliant on air conditioning but there were fans running all day, office equipment, fridges and lighting and all this adds up to approximately $12,000 per year.

I suggested to the committee that they get an energy analysis of the building to see if solar power would be suitable.  Jeremy came out and he looked at the shading of the roof, the pitch and the current usage.  A 19kW system was proposed to cover the Centres energy use.

There were two options the Centre had to finance the solar power system:

1. Buy the system outright at a cost of approximately $29,000.   This would mean that the centre would tap into their savings but would no longer have any electricity bills and over time the solar power system would have paid for itself in just 3 years.

 Or

2. Enter into a 5 year finance agreement organised by Country Solar NT. This means $0 upfront and a monthly pay back of approximately $600.  Therefore equalling a saving of $400 each month.

The committee chose option 2 and the solar panels were installed two weeks later over a weekend so as not to cause interruption to the children’s care.

I was great to see my daughter’s child care using 100% renewable energy and also saving money that can be put back into better resourcing the Centre.

If you’d like us to talk to your Child Care Centre we’re happy to come and have chat.

Cheers Kirsty

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