A pilot workshop has helped dairy farmers and service providers make sense of the solar industry.December 12, 2012 4:46am
Workshop participants (from left) Ray Warren (M&S Accouting), Troy Mauger (Murray Dairy), Andrew Murphy (dairy farmer), Brett Cox (electrician), Brett and Kylie Dixon (dairy farmers), James Walsh (Fonterra), Steve Hawken (dairy farmer), Doug Small (SKY project officer), Gail Hemphill (dairy farmer), Cathy Pell (dairy farmer) and Geoff Lodge (GV Community Energy).
Rising electricity costs motivated local dairy farmers to team up with Sustainable Kyabram (SKY) group to explore options for solar power.
SKY facilitated a pilot workshop with dairy farmers and service providers to help make sense of the solar industry following reduced incentives by state and federal governments.
‘‘Dairy farmers look for reliable and trustworthy information and SKY’s independence and experience with solar make us an ideal partner to help them make sound business decisions about solar,” said SKY project officer Lisa Booth.
SKY organised and facilitated a renewable milk workshop on the feasibility of using solar to help dairy farmers offset rising energy costs.
Not for profit group GV Community Energy was engaged to undertake preliminary modeling for two dairy farms.
Geoff Lodge from GVCE emphasized to the workshop the importance of matching solar panels to electricity consumption of the dairy.
‘‘Any excess electricity generated beyond consumption is fed back into the grid for a return less than the cost of its production,” according to Mr Lodge.
The workshop highlighted that investment in solar changed dramatically recently when the Victorian Government reduced the feed in tariff from 25 cents to 8 cents.
The workshop showed that it now makes no sense to install solar systems with capacity to generate electricity beyond that being used in the dairy.
However, SKY reports that early findings show that solar can be a sound investment on dairy farms as long as most of solar generated electricity is consumed on site.
“With a business model the project can help all dairy farmers across our region make better choices around solar energy,” said Ms Booth. Similar modeling can be applied to all commercial businesses.
If Kyabram and district businesses are interested in obtaining independent advice regarding energy and the installation of solar they are welcome to contact SKY project officers Ms Booth or Doug Small.
Mr Small said the findings of the workshop also apply to households. He cautioned anyone considering investing in solar to be wary about recommendations for system sizes that are not matched with electricity consumption.
“SKY’s ultimate goal is to see renewable power generated in Kyabram and we are happy to provide guidance to all community members in their quest to reduce their energy usage,” Ms Booth Lisa.
Ms Booth can be phoned on 0407
Shepparton East people are being invited to play a role in shaping their community.
Yarrawonga’s Bre Elliott played the most “consistent golf of her life” over three days to win the Fuccillo Kia Championship at Capital Hills by carding a 2-under 69 on the final day.
Heather Donaldson was re-elected president of Tatura Hospital Ladies Auxiliary at the annual general meeting on Thursday, which was attended by 33 people.
BRUCE Mundie claimed top honours in the bridleless freestyle category at the NSW Reining Horse Association State Show in Tamworth over the weekend.
THE 2015 National Blood Donor Week festivities will make the Rochester region Victoria’s new red light district.
Community workshop to consider issues to help form Campaspe digital strategy
Heather Stamp brings a long experience of the Salvation Army to Seymour.
Berrigan Shire Council have approved a development application for six more independent living units to add to Berrigan’s Amaroo Self Care Unit block.
THEY may be a familiar sight across the Heathcote district, but some of the much-loved birds in the region are in decline.
It was a field of emerald at the Soroptimist International of Cobram Barooga’s annual lunch on Friday, where diners enjoyed the craic at the Irish-themed event.
Deniliquin and district boasted two major winners at the Australian Sheep and Wool Expo at Bendigo from July 17 to 19.
Riverine Plains is set to hold the first in its series of farm walks for the 2015 season as part of its research into stubble retained cropping systems.
The News magazines are online - read the high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
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.