Centre to be solar powered

Jackson Lavell-LeeBusselton Dunsborough Times
Dunsborough Centrepoint Manager John Reid displays the new solar car park canopies
Camera IconDunsborough Centrepoint Manager John Reid displays the new solar car park canopies Credit: Jackson Lavell-Lee

The Dunsborough Centrepoint shopping centre solar carpark canopies have been completed and will be producing power within two weeks.

The installation took eight weeks, after being held up by poor weather, with all bays opening on July 1.

The installation includes new meters to measure the rate of electricity developed with productivity not known until a year of operation is complete. The carpark canopies cover three double-parking bays providing shelter to most cars in the car park.

Dunsborough Centrepoint owners invested $1 million in the 440kW system with a payback time estimated at seven years.

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A Federal Government Renewable Energy Buyback scheme allows a producer of electricity to sell every megawatt of power produced.

Dunsborough Centrepoint manager John Reid said the centre was looking into batteries in the future to capture the most savings.

He said with batteries getting smaller and more affordable, Dunsborough Centrepoint were looking at dispersing batteries throughout the Centre.

“Over a 12-month period our monitoring program will ensure everything is working OK and will provide us with a very good guide as to whether it is up to spec in terms of output,” he said. “On the best day in summer, we will be able to power the entire centre.”

The centre will continue to draw on the grid during poor weather or at night. “Our hope for the centre is to ensure there are no immediate increases in electricity costs and that we can pass on the savings,” Mr Reid said.

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