USC to save $100 million by powering up renewable project


NOTE: This article is older than 12 months

The University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) will save millions of dollars and thousands of tonnes of carbon emissions after installing 6000 rooftop solar panels and a giant water battery.

Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham was at the Sippy Downs campus today to flick the switch on the solar-battery scheme with USC Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Hill and Veolia Australia and New Zealand chief Danny Conlon.

“USC has calculated that this system will reduce their electricity use by 40 per cent and save the campus $100 million over 25 years,” Dr Lynham said.

“It shows that major organisations are taking up the challenge and joining Queensland’s renewable energy revolution.

“This $12 million project has created 80 local construction jobs and adds to more than 42,000 rooftop solar systems on the Sunny Coast, and the 520,000 residential solar systems across Queensland.

“This is the power of renewable energy: it’s clean and saves money, which is a win-win outcome for the environment and the economy.”

The 2.1-megawatt solar panel system has been installed across campus rooftops and carparks. The energy produced will cool 4.5 megalitres of water, which is then used for air-conditioning.

USC Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Hill said the system’s launch was a significant milestone in the university’s bid to become carbon neutral by 2025.

“For a regional university to be leading the way on this is proof that we don’t need to be in the big cities to be taking big strides in new ideas in renewables, and for us that’s very exciting,” Professor Hill said.

“The team behind this are already sharing the technology with schools, universities and companies around the world.”

Veolia Australia and New Zealand chief executive officer and managing director Danny Conlon said the project had been able to draw upon Veolia's global expertise, delivering a solution with long-term economic and environmental benefits for the university. 

"We're pleased to have created local employment and education opportunities in the region through this project," Mr Conlon said.

Dr Lynham said the project was in line with the government’s commitment to achieve 50 per cent renewables by 2030. Queensland already as 2900 megawatts of large-scale renewable generation capacity and another 900 megawatts more of large-scale renewable capacity is currently financially committed or under construction.


The system will prevent more than 92 thousand tonnes of CO2 emissions from reaching our atmosphere over 25 years, equivalent to 525 average Australian houses.

USC’s aim to be carbon neutral by 2025 dovetails with the State Government’s commitment to achieving 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030 and zero net emissions by 2050.

Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy
The Honourable Dr Anthony Lynham

Business Business & Economy Conservation Energy & Water Environment Infrastructure & Construction

The Honourable Anthony Lynham, Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy :
Queensland Wide
07 3719 7360
The Honourable Anthony Lynham, Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
Coles lets the Qld sunshine in 22 September 2020 | Queensland sunshine and breezes will be helping power your local Coles store from 2022. More information...
Waterworks package boosts jobs, taps in Brisbane and Sunshine Coast 18 September 2020 | An $11 million waterworks package underway will deliver up to 50 per cent more drinking water for suburbs north of Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast, supporting up to 30 jobs during construction. More information...
Mining community to honour fallen colleagues online 16 September 2020 | Queensland’s annual memorial for fallen mine workers will be livestreamed online for the general public for the first time in 2020. More information...
Queensland demands fair share of gas cash 15 September 2020 | The Palaszczuk Government is renewing its calls for fair Federal energy investment in Queensland following today’s belated gas promises. More information...
Experts examine a new Bradfield 02 September 2020 | An independent, expert panel chaired by Professor Ross Garnaut will conduct a comprehensive government examination of the Bradfield inland irrigation scheme. More information...
Better protections kick in for resources workers 01 September 2020 | Free, mandatory lung health checks and slashed mine dust limits take effect this week to protect the state’s mine and quarry workers. More information...
Solar supply in Queensland is through the roof 30 August 2020 | More than 600,000 Queensland homes and small businesses now have rooftop solar panels helping drive down their power bills. More information...
Work progressing on $24 million Sunshine Coast dam upgrade 26 August 2020 | Work is progressing on the $24 million Ewen Maddock Dam upgrade, providing up to 70 jobs for Sunshine Coast locals. More information...
LNP dam plan fails 25 August 2020 | The LNP have released plans for dams they’re not going to build and can’t pay for. More information...
Apprenticeships: powerful futures in Qld's energy sector 19 August 2020 | Queensland’s publicly owned energy distributors are on the hunt for the state’s brightest sparks with applications for apprenticeships opening this Friday. More information...

comments powered by Disqus

All articles submitted by third parties or written by My Sunshine Coast come under our Disclaimer / Terms of Service