Tenants in Castlemaine’s social and transitional housing are the beneficiaries of two free solar PV systems paid for by the MASH2 community solar bulk-buy.
Valued at $7,500, the 2Kw solar rooftops will cut tenants’ electricity bills by around $1,400 each year; $700 per property.
“The MASH promise is to install free solar PV systems on buildings that will benefit the community in some way”, said Jo Kaptein, Project Officer at the not-for-profit Hub Foundation Castlemaine, organisers of MASH. “These systems have been installed because the target of 100 MASH2 solar PV installations in Mt Alexander Shire was achieved and indeed exceeded.
“Homelessness – and the threat of homelessness – is a real issue for many in our Shire. We are delighted that these tenants will benefit directly from lower power bills as a result of MASH.”
Jane Huggins, recipient of one of the free PV systems said, “Our 2Kw MASH system has only been on a few weeks, but even having the panels on the roof has helped to insulate our roof and makes our living room cooler. And we’re rapt to know that our bill savings should be around $700 each year.
“We just bought a little portable air conditioner because we’ve now got solar. We put it on yesterday and it was terrific to be able to run it for free and keep cool.
“Morgan Kurrajong and his team from Universal Power and Light were fabulous. Morgan explained everything to me and they did a great job installing on the roof.”
“We check the readings on our inverter all the time as we’re so excited to be producing our own power.”
The system was supplied by SunEdison, the supplier for MASH2, and installed by Universal Power & Light, a Castlemaine-based solar PV installer working under contract to SunEdison on the MASH2 project. This is the third free system installed as a result of the MASH bulk-buy in Mount Alexander Shire; the other system was a 5Kw installation on the Newstead Community Centre resulting from round 1 of MASH.
Jane and her son, Mark Gell, are supported by CADARG, Castlemaine and District Accommodation and Resource Group as are the tenants in the second Castlemaine property.