160 solar panels have been installed at the Gray Gum Road site | Defender of the Great Lakes

news, local news, MidCoast Council, Tuncurry, Tuncurry Reclaimed Water Treatment Plant, Hallidays Point Wastewater Treatment Plant, Bulahdelah Water Treatment Plan, North Tuncurry Sports Complex

The Tuncurry Reclaimed Water Treatment Plant now draws most of its energy from the sun after 160 solar panels were installed at the Gray Gum Road site. The installation is part of a project that will see solar power systems installed at many MidCoast Council water and sewer sites over the next two years. Midcoast Council’s director of infrastructure and engineering services, Rob Scott, said the project would lead to a significant reduction in operating costs. “Our water and sewer infrastructure accounts for 80% of our overall electrical consumption, so it’s important that we find ways to reduce the costs associated with this part of our business,” Scott said. “By installing solar power systems at these sites, we expect to reduce our operating costs by $60,000 per year,” he said. The project also aligns with the Climate Change Strategy, which promises to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions from council operations by 2040. “This project will lead to an estimated CO2 reduction of more than 320 tons a year,” Scott said. “Most importantly, it sets the trend to invest more in renewable energy to power our operations, which we committed to when we adopted the climate change strategy last year.” The Tuncurry Reclaimed Water Treatment Plant is already providing significant environmental benefits to the region. Effluent from the Hallidays Point Wastewater Treatment Plant is treated on site for reuse at nearby sports fields and open spaces including North Tuncurry Sports Complex, Tuncurry Golf Course and Cemetery of Tuncurry. Previously, these areas were irrigated with a mixture of groundwater and drinking water from the city. Installation of a solar power system at the Bulahdelah sewage treatment plant is expected to start in March. Did you know? Great Lakes Advocate online subscribers not only have 24/7 access to local and national news, sports, current affairs and entertainment, but they also have access to our print edition in digital format, with all advertisements and classifieds at your fingertips.

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