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Solar Garden
Solar gardens explained. Infographic courtesy of Haystacks Solar Gardens.

Clean Power

You Can Now Buy Haystacks Solar Garden Plots!

Australia has a global reputation of having the highest rate of domestic rooftop solar installation. However, more than 30% of Australians cannot install solar on their roofs! The Solar Garden is a solution for those who find themselves locked out of solar.

Kristy, previously a team member of Solar Citizens, now leads the Community Power Agency (CPA). CPA campaigned for support for Solar Gardens. These allow access to distributed clean energy for those who rent or live in an apartment.

“The concept is similar to a community garden, except instead of providing a garden plot for veggies you can’t grow at home, a solar garden builds solar plots off site and then provides an on-bill credit from the solar to members’ electricity bills,” she explains. It’s a simple but effective method: buying a plot in an off-site solar garden, which is like a community garden but for clean energy!

CPA is now launching the Haystacks Solar Garden, a solar option for renters and apartment dwellers! The deadline for buying plots is September 30th. Everyone is able to participate in the renewables revolution!

Solar Gardens

Riverina, NSW — site of Haystacks Solar Garden. Photo courtesy Narranderra Shire Council.

Leah from Sydney explains why she bought a her plot: “I live in a very tall terrace house. The quotes on installing panels on my inaccessible roof are way too expensive. The Haystacks Solar garden is the perfect solution for me.”

CPA has teamed up with Pingala, Komo Energy, and electricity retailer is Energy Locals to provide a citizen lead energy provision. Despite a pandemic and because of the recurrent energy crises, CPA has worked hard to bring the project to harvest. Indeed, CleanTechnica first wrote about the project 2 years ago!

From a total of 333 solar garden plots, there are still over 200 plots available until September 30, 2022. Each plot is 3kW of solar panels and costs $4200 to purchase. The owner then receives a $505 credit per year for 10 years, equivalent to a Feed in Tariff of 12c/kWh.

“Solar gardens pioneer a way of having solar that moves when you move. Because the panels will be physically installed on a rural property in the NSW Riverina, when you move you simply change your address with the participating electricity retailer Energy Locals and your solar benefits keep on arriving to your bill.

“Anyone who pays an electricity bill can be a solar gardener. Regardless of whether you’re a renter in Bendigo who wants solar or someone in Brisbane with solar already who wants to help ensure this model becomes a reality.”

Now, finally, there is a solar solution for renters, apartment dwellers, and those who do not have a suitable roof for solar — solar gardens!

 
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Written By

David Waterworth is a retired teacher who divides his time between looking after his grandchildren and trying to make sure they have a planet to live on. He is long on Tesla [NASDAQ:TSLA].

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