Queensland Education Minister Grace Grace announced on Thursday that the state’s Advancing Clean Energy Schools (ACES) program had been completed with a total of 200,000 solar PV panels installed on rooftops at 912 schools spread across the state.
Grace said the result had outstripped expectations for the program, which had been expanded in February 2022.
“I am particularly proud that we exceeded our original target of 180,000 panels at 872 schools and have instead delivered 200,000 panels at 912 schools,” she said. “This equates to a $26 million saving on energy bills every single year and is enough renewable energy to power 25,000 homes.”
Grace said the solar installations would make a significant contribution to the Palaszczuk Government’s 50% renewable energy target by 2030, with the 200,000 solar panels expected to generate an average of 280 MW of electricity per day.
Queensland Environment Minister Meaghan Scanlon said the program was good news for schools and great news for the state government’s renewable energy target.
“ACES is making a significant contribution to the Palaszczuk Government’s 50% renewable energy target by 2030, with the 200,000 solar panels on state school rooftops expected to generate an average of 280 MW of electricity per day,” the Gold Coast-based minister said. “The 17,000 panels in the Gold Coast alone can generate around 23,000 kW of electricity per day.”
The Nerang State High School in the Gold Coast’s northern suburbs is among the schools to receive rooftop solar with 484 panels installed as part of a $310,000 investment.
Principal Scott Ison said the solar system, which has been operating since last year, can generate around 630 kW of electricity per day.
“These new solar panels will not only deliver significant energy savings for the school but will also allow us to redirect these savings into important teaching and learning activities that will benefit every student,” he said.
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