At the beginning of the month the annual Clean Energy Week summit was held in the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre. The summit was a valuable and exciting week full of renewable energy updates and future plans,not only to increase the number of solar panels in Melbourne, but to propel Australia and the world towards a cleaner energy production in the near future.
The summit tackled all the issues related to this in depth;the first day of the summit was devoted in discussing the solar industry business and policies that they need to be guided with. Along with that discussion were talks about future solar plans and financing of renewable energy programs.
Andthe discussion didn’t end there; a timely and controversial issue was also tackled. Carbon pricing settings around the world became the most debated issue on that day.
During the second day of the summit renewable energy breakthroughs including wind and bio fuels were discussed. The summit introduced future technologies and what is needed for them to succeed. The day was packed with updates on where we stand on our fight against carbon emissions.
The third day was centered on the feed in tariff; debates were held on how the current schemes can be improved and what other provisions need to be legislated to further develop the government’s participation. Alongside the feed in tariff our home solar issues were discussed including new breakthroughs in technology for households who want to be independent from the grid. The current renewable energy target was the final subject for the rest of the day.
Professional development was held during the fourth day of the summit; seminars and training were conducted regarding safety issues, quality installation procedures and products. A rundown of the state government’s policies were also laid out to ensure compliance.
The last two days of the summit was devoted for the ATRAA (Appropriate Technology Retailers Association of Australia) convention where other renewable energy concerns were tackled and answered.
As always it was very useful and educational week which will have a big influence on what takes place in regard to solar power and renewable energy in Australia in the year ahead.
1200 Buildings Program
Melbourne is one of the most progressive cities in Australia and boasts a commercial sector that is booming……That success comes at a price though; the commercial sector of Melbourne is responsible for nearly half of the total carbon emissions within the city.
Currently there are about 1200 buildings across the area, and experts believe that if they can convert the buildings energy production from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources they can reduce the total carbon emission of the city by at least 20% or 383,000 tonnes of carbon over the next few years.
This is the exact scenario that led to the development of the 1200 buildings program in the first quarter of the year 2010. The program aims to increase the number of solar panels in Melbourne, and to holistically turn 1200 buildings GREENER, by combining renewable energy sources, water saving facilities and waste reduction methods. It is a great way for the city to see a brighter future both environmentally and economically; the project is said to at least bring 800 new jobs and a 1.3 Billion dollar revenue to the city.
In accordance to the 1200 buildings program the city of Melbourne recently commissioned its first commercial hybrid solar lighting technology. This ingenious new technology works by tracking the sun and concentrates its energy through a fibre-optic cable to an area, such a room or a basement, which is often not reached by the sun. Solar collectors are installed on building’s rooftops and the collected sunlight is directed via the fiber optics and then delivered to hybrid light fixtures. A single collector is expected to power at least 8 light fixtures, and savings on lighting energy consumption can range from 50 up to 70 percent.
The technology is expected to decrease the reliance of buildings to artificial sources of light and it will also contribute to broader market transformations towards sustainable development.