Possible Options for Noosa

As further detail is developed, each of these ideas will be moved to their own section, and hopefully many of them will move to ongoing programs and projects.

"the Roadmap project is about developing realistic options to reach the 100% Renewable Electricity goal - for Council, State Government, Business, Community Groups & residents"
"the Roadmap is currently at the exploratory stage.  Once options gain wide support, they can be promoted as the Roadmap moves to a selling stage"

Our goal is to develop realistic options to reach 100% Renewable Electricity - for potential implementation by Council, State Government, Business, Community Groups & residents.

We are currently at the exploratory stage.  We have identified a range of possible options. 

Now we need to look at these options more closely and decide which ‘have legs’ and which can be ruled out - on the basis for example that the cost and risk is clearly too high, or the impact on RE uptake is too uncertain, or we cannot identify an organisation which might agree to implement the initiative.

Once we have produced a list of realistic possibilities - options ‘with legs’ - we can conduct public consultations to test the extent of likely support in the community.

This will allow us to arrive at a set of realistic options for discussion with organisations which might choose to take on the implementation role.

Next step: Identifying options ‘with legs’ - suggestion for a proforma

Suggestion for ProForma

On the journey to 100% Renewable Electricity for Noosa, we are currently at the exploratory stage in developing options about how we will reach it.

Here are some suggestions for aspects of options that should be addressed in order to get better clarity, and to assist is assessing the relative merits of options in contributing towards the goal.

  • Name / title of option
  • Description
    • no more than 1/2 page
    • what does this option do?
  • Impact
    • why is this worth considering?
    • what are the benefits
      • impact on renewable electricity, ie impact on current approx 300GWh of Fossil Fuel generated electricity
      • economic - can a $$$ benefit be attributed?
      • social
  • Responsibility
    • who might implement this option?
  • Resources / Cost
    • very rough - order of magnitude
    • who bears the cost?
  • Relationship to existing programs
    • Need to show that this option does not duplicate any existing program
    • Useful to indicate any complementarity with existing programs.
  • Risks
  • Further Research Required
    • for example, Environmental Upgrade Agreements sound like a great idea, but further research is required to determine if this is possible with current legislation

Expression of possible options using this proforma approach would allow a "traffic light" gating process to classify options as Yes, No or Maybe for the next stage of ‘selling’ to potential implementation organisations

Other Suggestions

  • encourage folks to use Comments to give feedback on suggestions
  • even better create a simple form where folks can evaluate suggestions as a way of getting some structured feedback.  This is pretty straightforward in Squarespace, and could be publicised at the community consultations, and also act as a way of extending the conversation
  • also add a form where folks can suggestion programs / projects we haven't thought of yet (as use same structured form as for evaluations / template

Just a brain dump for now to start discussion.

We (the royal ones) need to cross check these against input we had from the community workshop held on 23 September last year.  

Also check against facilitated workshop held 22 November 2016 with notes from Joe.

This section has copy / paste programs form EGSC report plus brain dump from Geoff for Noosa specific programs.  There's some crossover to be reconciled.

Mick Davis also has some suggested programs.

Curating possible options / programs

A first cut has been done to remove duplicates and group options into their types, so they may be presented at the community consultations.....

Noosa Council Possible Touch Points

Noosa Council is expected to be involved the the various options / programs to different degrees.  Some areas are in total control of Council, whilst others will attract varying levels of support.

These are suggestions only, and are yet to be discussed with Council


1. From East Gippsland Report

7.1.1.     Energy Info Hubs

EGSC  could  consider  further  developing  their ‘Energy  Use and Savings’  website  into a more comprehensive  Online  Energy  Info  Hub  that  pulls  together,  screens,  and  provides  access  to reliable information and tools that are most relevant to East Gippsland Shire. It could also ink to online  tools such as the Solar  Potential  Tool and the Sunulator.  Ideally,  a shop front drop-in centre could be established.  Energy  assessors  could be established  to conduct  home energy audits,  and  they  could  even  operate  from  the  drop-in  centre.  These  and  other  ideas  for community engagement are discussed in Section 6.1.1 and 6.1.2.


Suggest access via funnel

7.1.2.     Solar bulk buy

EGSC could coordinate  a solar bulk buy according to the process outlined in Section 6.3.1. It should  be run in close  consultation  with  an organisation  such  as MASH,  use local installers, provide a community benefit, and could include batteries and SWHs.


7.1.3.     Solar $avers

EGSC could pursue its current proposal to participate in the state-wide Solar $avers program. Although  they  have  been  unable  to  include  local  installers  in the  current  program,  it can  be duplicated with local installers at a later date.

Council, Financial, low-income

relates to EUA

7.1.4.     Landlord/tenant agreements

EGSC could provide information on the different approaches whereby landlords can install solar and receive payment from their tenants so that both benefit.

Financial sharing, plit incentive

7.1.5.     Local industry

EGSC  could  coordinate  a two-stage  process  to assist businesses  obtain  solar – see Section
6.3.2. The first stage would involve a Multi-site Feasibility Study, which is a high level assessment of the viability of solar. The second stage would involve a call for tenders for installers and an assessment of those tenders, then quality assurance of the completed installations.

Business/Commercial, Financial, Regulatory, Strata

7.1.6.     Community organisations

EGSC  and  DELWP  could  develop  a  publicly  available  transparent  process  that  tenants  are required to go through if they wish to install solar PV - see Section 6.3.2. This should include some form of assurance that the lease term would be long enough to pay off the solar system. The subsequent process to assess then install solar would be the same as for the Commercial Businesses above. 

EGSC could contact the coordinator of the ‘Solar my School’ program that is being run jointly by Waverly,  Randwick  and  Woollahra  councils,  and  models  a  similar  program  for  local  primary schools.

Incorporate into our section below

7.1.8.     Large-scale solar

EGSC could facilitate the development of large-scale solar projects as described in Section 6.3.3. This Section also described how EGSC could be more proactive through a first-stage assessment of options  (as for the commercial  sector),  resulting  in a ‘raster  map’, which provides  a visual representation  of  the  suitability  of  different  areas  for  large-scale  PV,  and  an  estimate  of  the associated costs.

7.1.9.     End-of-Grid

EGSC could facilitate the different stakeholders that may be interested in developing end-of-grid solar systems. In the example provided in Section 6.3.4, AusNet could own a battery to manage short-term supply interruptions, the community could own/operate a solar PV system, then East Gippsland Water could both provide the land at the local water treatment facility and purchase the electricity.

Not applicable

7.1.10.   Community-Owned Renewable Energy

EGSC could facilitate the development of community-owned renewable energy projects in all the above proposals, as detailed in Section 6.3.5. For all but the large-scale solar projects, this would most likely use the RePower Shoalhaven model, and ideally be with their direct assistance. For large-scale solar, either a cornerstone investor or an unlisted public company limited by shares or a cooperative structure could be used. 

Council, possible Council owned premises, Finance, Awareness / Visibility, Community buy-in


Large consumers

Specific programs or projects could be done to influence large consumers of electricity in Noosa to lower their electricity carbon emissions.

Unity Water

Annie N thinks Kylie may be able to give us their yearly consumption....

Kylie Crouch | Environmental Affairs Manager
Sustainable Infrastructure Solutions

Level 1, 6-10 Maud St, Maroochydore Qld 4558
t: 07 5352 9430 | m: 0419 546 772
e: kylie.crouch@unitywater.com

Geoff to contact

Unity Water have won an award for their Energy Reduction Program 

Noosa Civic

Noosa Civic is part of QIC shopping centre’s energy efficiency drive. They have secured Clean Energy Finance Corporation debt finance to QIC’s Shopping Centre Fund to bring their centres to a min 4-star NABERS(National Australian Built Environment Rating System), and includes Energy Efficiency, Solar PV, energy management, and Electric Vehicle infrastructure.

Darren Walters spoke with the centre manager in December to find out more.  He was told that Noosa Civic's on the list but not near the top of the priority list.

Our thoughts were that it would be great if Noosa Civic could be at the top of the list.  We are confident that it would receive Council support given Noosa Council's commitment to achieve zero emissions for Council activities by 2026.

For what they're worth, my thoughts are that by making QIC aware of the strong community and political support that their project for Noosa Civic would attract, they may well consider moving Noosa Civic to near the top of their list.

Would also be useful if we could get access to annual electricity usage (MWh).

Also refer to Renew Economy article.

Other Shopping Centres

? a me-too following Civic ?

useful if we could get access to annual electricity usage (MWh).

Other large consumers?

?any ideas about how we identify these?

Noosa Hospital - Ramsey


Chill Stores????

National Chains

Bunnings, Coles, Woolworths, Aldi, IGAs, Officeworks


Solar for schools

Refer to East Gippsland study

Should be expanded to cover all educational centres

Question: who pays for electricity for State Schools - is it the individual school, or is it paid centrally?

State schools do pay their own electricity
Most principals want to invest in solar but they have a challenge form the education department as to how they go about it and it becomes all too hard. The Ed department are supposed to be putting together a state wide approach and have been working on this for nearly 5 years but have not yet come to a conclusion
We have dealt with the department at a very high level, I can explain in more detail in out next meeting or over the phone prior. 
Matt Harold
Energy Consultant

Rob found  http://education.qld.gov.au/facilities/solar/energy.html

Roman has approached St Teresa's ???

There's also this recent State Gov press release 

So these Noosa LGA schools are in:

  • Cooroy State School
  • Noosa District State High School
  • Cooran State School
  • Noosa District State High School - Pomona Campus
  • Noosaville State School
  • Pomona State School
  • Sunshine Beach State High School
  • Sunshine Beach State School

And these 3 state schools miss out
Kin Kin SS
Federal SS
Tewantin SS

 Reference: http://education.qld.gov.au/schools/maps/pdfs/northcoast.pdf

Reference: http://education.qld.gov.au/schools/maps/pdfs/northcoast.pdf

Also need to list others here:

  • independant schools
    • St Teresa's Catholic College
    • St Thomas Moree Catholic Primary School
    • Good Shepherd Lutheran College
    • Noosa Christian College (Cooroy)
    • Montessori School (Bicentennial building)
    • Noosa Pengari Steiner School
    • Peregian Beach College
  • tertiary institution (branches)
  • colleges, eg Lexus
  • pre-schools, etc


Tourism Noosa - Refresh Noosa Program

Zero Emissions Noosa is in discussions with Tourism Noosa about incorporating energy efficiency and solar PV into the Refresh Noosa Program.

More details to follow.....

EE, embedded networks, strata

Solar Savers

Refer to East Gippsland report

Based on Darebin Council (Melbourne) program

Solar Saver helps Darebin residents, businesses and organisations to install solar panels - saving you money on your energy bills.

We'll pay the upfront cost for the system, and you (or your landlord) pay it off over ten years, interest free.
The savings you make on your energy bills will more than outweigh your repayments to Council, leaving you better off.
Systems are available from 2kW to 5kW. For most households, the bigger the system, the better the payback.
Council has done the work to help you access:
A reliable supplier and installer
Quality panels and inverters
Extended warranties (25 years for the panels; 10 years for the inverter and installation)
A discounted price.
There have been two previous rounds of Solar Saver, and so far nearly 500 households have benefitted from the program.
A new round of Solar Saver will open soon, with installations to occur from July 2018. 
If solar is a viable option for your household, you will be offered a no-obligation quote. The solar provider will talk you through what size of system will work for your house and your budget.

Here's a useful recent summary of the options for renters from ReNew magazine.

Combine with above

Clubs, Community Organisations

Possible program in conjunction with Noosa Council for all club houses to have solar.  Fund via grant programs - Gambling, Noosa Community.  ZEN, Repower Noosa, RE Cluster could help facilitate, and maybe partner with the NTP organisations going for grants.

Advantage in the fan out effect, of solar touching many people in the community, influencing them to consider solar for home and/or business.

Rob Passey has commented that in other jurisdictions, considerable effort has been expended in getting approvals for solar PV on Council owned buildings.  Standardisation and streamlining of the processes would facilitate the uptake. 

Council, audit of community buildings, funding criteria

Industrial Estate(s)

Revive the MW for Noosaville Industrial estate program that never really got off the ground

Vivien to collate her great work to date

Environmental Upgrade Agreements

Maybe Noosa Council can take this one on...

Some of you may already know about these, but I've just stumbled over this concept of environmental upgrade agreements.  They look very interesting as a way to break down the barrier for a business leasing a building to get solar PV and energy efficiency measures installed.

From one of the links...
At the highest level, EUF is a loan provided by a lender like Sustainable Melbourne Fund, to a building owner. Repayments are collected by local governments via a special council rate, called an Environmental Upgrade Charge.
Unlike other forms of finance, EUF doesn’t require a mortgage, directors’ guarantees or registered security interests on the Personal Property Security Register (PPSR).  
The Environmental Upgrade Charge is a charge on the land (just like normal Council Rates). It can therefore be transferred between owners or tenants upon sale or change of occupancy. If a business moves premises, the new tenant simply picks up the future rate repayments.

I had a quick look but don't know if there is legislation/regulation to allow this in Queensland.

I understand that Annie Nolan / Noosa Council is aware of EUAs and some investigation may be underway

Vivien says  Council can certainly fund work and place a rate on the land to collect repayment.  This is by means of a levy (see attached current levies in place).  Councils must specify via a policy what the levy is for and who pays it so each of these levies in place will have a policy which forms part of the budget statements.  Of particular interest is the specific levy placed on North Shore residents, where council paid up front for the connection of electricity and now collects repayment via land rates.

Also see

City of Melbourne EUF

Clean Energy Finance Corp Factsheet

Landlord Toolkit

The issue of landlords / leasor has been mentioned by many installers as a barrier for businesses to go solar.

Similarly renters of residential properties are locked out.

The Social Deck have proposed developing a Landlord Toolkit as part of our grant submission to Noosa Council Economic Development.

Toolkit specifically addressing barriers and benefits to installing solar for landlords. This
toolkit can be used by Repower Noosa, Installers cluster and Council to persuade
landlords of the benefits to installing solar.

Property owners and their agents, ie Real Estate & Property Managers could be targeted.  Dave Langdon(Property Manager) thinks these parties would see benefit if it meant higher yields.

Cluster of Renewable Energy Suppliers

This is key part of the Repower Noosa movement.

CCIQ EcoBiz & Other Government programs


Mick Davis is an EcoBiz coach.  ZENe / Repower Noosa can help to promote this service, which is often the pre-cursor to businesses improving their energy efficiency and going solar.

CCIQ ecoBiz is a free program, funded by the Queensland Government, that helps businesses save money across their energy, water and waste bills.

ecoBiz has been amazingly successful, and worked with over 1000 Queensland businesses. To date: 

  • Close to 100 businesses have achieved ecoBiz Star Partnership, cut their energy, water and waste bills by an average of 16%, and saved a total of $255,000. 
  • ecoBiz Star Partners have saved almost 7,350 tonnes of CO₂ - equivalent to 2,880 cars being taken off the road every year. 
  • Over 700 businesses have received personalised, one-on-one coaching sessions which provide tailored advice on how to reduce their energy, water and waste costs. 

With the help of the ecoBiz coaches' advice, you will be able to develop and implement an action plan to help your business save money and increase efficiencies. ecoBiz then gives you the support you need to help track your usage across energy, water and waste. 

Even small changes can mean big savings.  

Other Programs

New State Government have some election pledges.

State Government programs are here



Solar & Heat Pump Hot Water Systems

to do

Other Publicly Owned Buildings

Program to encourage all to have solar.



We are highly dependant on Energex for us to succeed in our goal.

Three aspects


  • engage with Energex at a planning level, above the one off connection requests that installers make
  • ? shift night rate HWS to midday ?


Energex has incentives such as PeakSmart for air conditioners, and Positive Payback for Business

Cooroibah, Doonan, Eumundi, Noosaville, North Shore, Peregian Beach, Ringtail Creek, Tewantin, Tinbeerwah, Verrierdale, Weyba Downs, Yandina Creek.    
Peak Times 12-5pm
Funding Value up to $185/kW¹
Power Factor Incentive up to $41/kVAr

We understand anecdotally, that uptake of these schemes is not as high as they would like. 

ZENe / Repower Noosa could partner to help publicise these (& maybe with some help $ from them?)

Political / Lobbying

In parallel with engagement at an engineering level, lobby through political channels and higher level Energex/Energy Queensland Management.

Noosa Plan

Talk with Annie about ideas that have been raised

  • energy efficiency ratings for new development applications
  • revive previous solar HWS requirement (or upgrade to include heat pump HWS)
  • solar for new development applications

Think of a future time when all buildings will have some level of solar as a normal part of the infrastructure like water, sewerage, electricity, etc.

Solar Farm(s)

initial pre-feasability (not completed) indicated that combination of land cost / land size / proximity to 11kV / 33kV mean that sites inland are financially more attractive.

But keep on the radar.

Energy Efficiency Drive

Lobby big box retailers and air conditioning suppliers to inform customers of the lower cost of running 4/5 star heat pump air conditioning, ie 1 kW electricity in = 4/5 kW heating/cooling out

Maybe they could run promotions to replace old clunker air conditioners and resistance heaters where 1kW electricity in = 1 kW heating / cooling out

Gas vs Induction

Refer Aust Government Energy Rating website

Noosa Renewable Energy Investors

Noosa has a number of high net worth individuals who have been attracted here based on "Noosa values".

The transition to renewable energy will require significant investment, and these folk may be able to contribute to the financing, subject to financial and regulatory constraints.  This could include local investment in Noosa, as well as investment in larger solar/wind farms outside the local government area.

It would be desirable if ordinary folk could also be part of this idea. 

Noosa Solar Map

The Australian Photovoltaic Institute (APVI) Solar Potential Tool (SunSPoT) is an online tool for estimating the potential for electricity generation from PV on building roofs in Australian cities. The tool accounts for solar radiation and weather at the site; PV system area, tilt, orientation; and shading from nearby buildings and vegetation.

It is currently only available for capital cities.  For around $10k it can be adapted for use in a Council Local Government Area.  This could potentially be a very useful tool to help with accelerating the uptake of solar PV.

Update from Rob Passey:

  • Sunspot for a region costed on a tile basis - one tile = 2 X 2 Km
  • Approx 1 week to do - Ice Labs(web developer) quote
  • Byron 26 tiles cost $12k
  • this translates to approx $460 / tile


Initiatives From Other Repower Groups

Here's the results of a quick Google search for other Repower groups around Australia.  We may be able to adopt some of the strategies & ideas, as well as connect with them.

Repower Port Augusta

Campaign for solar thermal

After a five year campaign led by the local community Premier Jay Weatherill and the South Australian Government have committed to making solar thermal with storage happen in Port Augusta. Building solar thermal in Port Augusta brings 24 hour solar power to SA, creating hundreds of regional jobs, cuts pollution and puts downward pressure on electricity prices.

repower port augusta

Repower Byron

Repower Byron Shire is a community movement  led by COREM and Enova Community  to support and inspire us all to transition to a renewable energy future. It’s about switching on people power by decreasing the cost of electricity, increasing local power generation and reducing carbon emissions.

repower byron




Repower Victoria

Environment Victoria Department community campaign resources

repower victoria

Repower New South Wales

Nature Conservation Council NSW campaign

repower new south wales

Repower Shoalhaven

Repower Shoalhaven are a non-profit community organisation. We have developed a community financing model for solar power. We offer your business or organisation the chance to buy locally owned, democratic solar power at prices which are cheaper than you currently get from your retailer. We also offer community financed loans and leasing arrangements for solar power systems. 

repower shoalhaven

Repower Lismore

Solar Citizen's campaign in Lismore

repower lismore

Pledges / surveys


Virtual Power Plants


Retirement Villages

Tom Sheridan -Sundale
Village planned at Tewantin. Upgrades planned for Nambour
Will talk at next Electric ZEN meeting
Use as showcase

Case Studies - beyond solar cluster ones

Local champions

Carbon Offset Programs

From Michael Davis

I wanted to raise a topic  about Noosa, why it's special and what is important to its residents.

Noosa's uniqueness is how it has been protected from over-development, in fact 36% of the 150,000 hectares of the Noosa Shire is protected land that can’t be developed. This helps protect Noosa natural environment.

Noosa also has a population cap of 61,000 this is another unique feature that makes Noosa special through low density housing .

There is also some great traction in revegetation in Noosa, and many groups are planting thousands of new trees into our landscape, this is well supported by Noosa residents.

So, I think it’s important to consider the sequestration of carbon through our protected lands but more importantly through the efforts of revegetation in Noosa, as part of the ZEN roadmap.

I believe that if revegetation was brought into the calculation for your roadmap it would be well supported and would demonstrate that zero emissions is not just renewable energy but a holistic approach to the way we exist in a sustainable way with our environment.

Info from Phil Moran - Noosa & District Landcare (6 Mar 18 @ ZENInc AGM)

  • Elanda Point - 300,000 trees
  • Kin Kin - 60,000 trees



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