Library to go solar
Port Macquarie Library will soon be harvesting the energy of the sun to power its operations with Council investing more than $500,000 to install 512 solar panels on the building's roof.
The solar panels are expected to be installed later this year. They will generate 97kW of solar power and reduce the facility's electricity consumption by up to 50 percent per year. The library will join several other Council facilities that currently harness solar power including the public toilets at the historic cemetery and Shelly Beach.
Environmental Engineer Gordon Cameron said the decision to go solar at the library was based on where the technology would reap the biggest rewards in terms of sustainability, savings and community education.
The solar panel initiative is being funded through Council's Waste Environment Levy and State government contributions.
"We undertook a review of Council's primary facilities and greatest energy users. These included the Cairncross Waste Management Facility, Council's main office and the library," Mr Cameron said.
"The library was the preferred option with the potential to save up to 50 percent of its current electricity costs, its visual presence in town and its use as a community facility. It will also provide us with an opportunity to raise awareness and educate the community about the benefits of solar power and some of the things that can be done to reduce energy consumption."
Tenders for the installation of the solar panels are currently being prepared.