Lady Elliot Island Management is very excited to announce our commitment to reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions by installing a Hybrid Solar Power Station on the island. The Power Station has been funded through a joint venture between Lady Elliot Island and the Australian Governments Renewable Remote Power Generation Programme administered by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort is located on a remote island at the southern tip of the Great Barrier Reef. Currently, electricity is produced by three diesel powered generators. In consultation with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), a Level 3 Energy Audit was conducted of the entire resort, complete with recommended actions for significant savings in energy. Following the Energy Audit, Resort Management implemented low-cost, energy saving measures which resulted in a 24% reduction in energy costs. The audit also identified opportunities to develop a hybrid off-grid power station to reduce carbon emissions, noise and the reliance on fossil fuel. Mr Frank Dallmeyer from Tropical Energy Solutions was contracted to design the electrical and solar component for a Hybrid Solar Power System to meet the electricity needs of the resort operation.
This unique construction was designed by Peddle Thorp Architects and will be the largest Off Grid Power System in Queensland funded under the Governments program. The Hybrid Power Station consists of 130 square meters of Solar Panels, Battery Banks with 48 cells, Inverters, and a brand new generator that is a third of the size of our current units. Initial reduction in fuel consumption and emissions is estimated to be approximately 40% and the proposed system is expandable allowing for additional solar panels or wind generators to be added over time further reducing the reliance of fossil fuels. Our long-term goal is to run the resort entirely on solar power and other renewable power sources thereby eliminating the use of generators except as backup.
The solar panels, batteries and inverters are currently on their way from Europe and will arrive on the island by barge at the end of October along with the building materials. Charles Osborne from Genesis Solar Technologies P/L has been contracted for the installation of inverters and wiring of the Power Station. Construction of the Hybrid Solar Power Station will commence in November 2008.
Interpretive tours will be conducted for guests and educational groups to raise awareness on the effects of Climate Change on a coral cay, what Lady Elliot Island is doing to help slow down climate change, explore the island's history, visit the old diesel generators, calculate carbon emissions and tour the new hybrid solar power station to discover how they have managed to substantially reduce carbon emissions on the island. A timber viewing walkway will be constructed around the new power station to allow ease of access for visitors.
According to Kathleen Swalling, Manager Commonwealth Islands GBRMPA, 'Climate change is one of the largest threats to the Great Barrier Reef and it is initiatives like this proposal that will help mitigate that risk and raise awareness of the importance of taking immediate action.'
State-of-the-Art Hybrid Stand Alone Power System
Natural materials, low embedded energy
Reduced fuel consumption & spillage risk
Ability to remove or extend system
Use of natural ventilation for cooling
Use of ballast for stability
Noise reduced, silent genset
Comprehensive data logging system
Public communication/web hosting
On-site maintenance & repairs
Minimised eco-footprint for resort
Visitor education program