Former CSIRO team leader Barney Foran gave a presentation to the Benalla Sustainable Future Group recently and spoke about different energy sources, including biomass energy.DAVID DORE November 2, 2012 12:48pm
Benalla Sustainable Future Group hosted a presentation by one of Australia’s big thinkers in August, Barney Foran, who gave a talk entitled Benalla Energy Transition Options: Regional enterprise, low carbon energy security.
Mr Foran, a former CSIRO team leader and now visiting fellow at Charles Sturt University, presented the 40 people present with data on our community’s energy use, particularly looking at electricity and natural gas.
Some alternative energy sources are being rapidly adopted, such as domestic photovoltaic panels — however these will only contribute a part of Benalla’s future energy solution.
Another option that will be crucial for the future will be ‘biomass energy’, primarily derived from new tree plantings, but with contributions from garbage disposal.
Barney presented a scenario where biomass energy is contributing almost half of our energy needs in the future. A single site could produce energy in the form of electricity and two fuels for transport — biomethanol and DME, a fuel suitable for diesel motors.
The technology to make Benalla self-sustaining in its energy use is already available. What would be required to achieve this is several thousand hectares of new forest plantings, distributed over farms in such a way as to improve habitat and summer shelter for animals. Investment in creating a gas turbine plant would also be required.
In addition to the large community presence, Benalla Sustainable Future Group was encouraged by the presence of three councillors from Benalla Rural City, the CEO of the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority, as well as representatives from DSE and local industry.
At the conclusion of the evening John Lloyd, president of Benalla Sustainable Future Group, thanked Barney Foran for the enormous amount of work he had gone to in developing a specific set of numbers on energy demand and future energy supply for Benalla.
For thousands of years communities have planned and managed their own energy needs. It is only in the last 100 years or so that this work has been done for us by state governments. Maybe it’s time for us to start thinking about it again?
Higher numbers of Queensland fruit fly prompts call for people to clean up gardens.
The Yarrawonga Mulwala B Grade Rams have secured the Des Johnston Shield as WDCA B Grade Two Day Premiers for season 2014/2015 with a crushing win over City Colts.
Mystery and romance abound in a new novel from leading lady of Australian women’s fiction, Fleur McDonald.
For a long time, Ben O’Dea was not sure whether he lived at the Royal Children’s Hospital or in Moama.
Rochester Football Netball Club hosted an information evening last week in collaboration with Ambulance Victoria to educate members on the correct use of the club’s defibrillator.
20th Heritage Day a hit
Councillors last night put out for public comment a draft budget which proposed a lower-than-expected increase.
Finley have now formed their own Local Health Advisory Committee.
Heathcote Primary School put on a colourful display for Easter on Friday with an Easter hat parade featuring everything from the very edible to amazingly tall.
VicRoads will review speed limits on the Murray Valley Highway in Cobram and Strathmerton following petitions calling for them to be lowered.
Leading concert artist Daniel de Borah will perform in Deniliquin tonight as part of the South West Music 2015 concert series.
Toolamba Primary School student Felix Turnbull is looking forward to seeing his face on new SPC labels that will be on supermarket shelves across the nation.
Benalla GP Paul Kelly receives an award in recognition of his 37 years as a doctor in rural Victoria.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.