The installation of solar panels at the Korong Vale Water Treatment Plant in Victoria has reduced the plant’s consumption of grid energy, with 50 per cent of the plant operations now powered by solar.

General Manager Insight and Innovation Jon Anstey said the $55,000 project is a first for the Coliban Water region and is part of the company’s commitment to deliver innovation and achieve renewable energy targets set by the Victorian Government.

“In June we installed a 30KW solar energy system consisting of 112 panels at the Korong Vale Water Treatment Plant. This improves the plant’s energy efficiency by using solar power, before drawing from the grid network,” Mr Anstey said.

“The Korong Vale plant was chosen for the project because of its location, size and the compatibility of its electricity system with the solar network.”

The Korong Vale Water Treatment Plant is serviced by the Wimmera Supply System and delivers treated water to residents, commercial and industry users through 121 connections.

The plant can treat up to 3.6 megalitres of raw water per day before it pumps the treated water from its clear water tanks to the reticulation system.

When the pumps are not in operation the water from the tanks is supplied to the town through a gravity fed system.

“Pump and filtration systems consume high levels of energy and the completion of this project means these systems at the Korong Vale plant are now largely powered by solar energy,” Mr Anstey said

Mr Anstey said the project was expected to deliver an annual saving of $7,000 in energy costs and reduce carbon emissions by 20 tonnes a year.

“25 per cent of the state’s electricity is to come from renewable energy by 2020. This project will enable 50 per cent of the plant’s operations to be powered by solar energy and is an encouraging early step towards achieving the 2020 goals,” Mr Anstey said.

“Whilst the targets were officially announced in June we had been anticipating them for some time. Our sustainability strategy outlines our longstanding commitment to supporting innovation and operational improvement by investing in sustainable technology.

“Implementing green technology benefits our business, community and environment. Solar is a renewable source of power and is a key way to reduce our carbon footprint.”

“With the successful completion of this project we are keen to explore opportunities for renewable energy at other treatment plants and will continue to work with the state government on emission reduction targets.”

Lauren brings a fresh approach to content. While she’s previously written for publications as diverse as Australian Geographic, The Border Watch and Girlfriend, she’s found her true passion in her current role as an editor in the world of energy and infrastructure trade magazines.

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