Australia’s largest hospital solar power system will be built at Port Macquarie Base Hospital as part of a $900,000 investment via the Mid North Coast Local Health District project. The hospital solar farm is projected to save the Port Macquarie Base Hospital around $130,000 in energy bills each year.
Australia’s largest hospital solar power system
The ABC is reporting that the hospital solar power system will generate 609kW and “significantly” reduce the site’s dependency on the grid. The project will involve installing more than 2,000 photovoltaic panels to cover most of the available roof space at the hospital. Queensland commercial solar power installer Solgen will be responsible for installing the panels, according to Port News.
Project manager for environmental sustainability for the Mid North Coast Local Health District, Danny Saunders, said that he expected other hospitals in a similar situation could follow suit with regards to installing solar on top of their roofs:
“They have large roofs and consumption day and night. It’s really the perfect storm for installing solar,” Mr Saunders said. He discussed how installing a large-scale solar project on top of a hospital is certainly not a new idea, and that he’s aware of a few others in various stages of completion:
“I know Canberra recently put in a very large system, and Adelaide and Bankstown is going through the process as well now.”
“We just happen to have the largest one at the moment,” Mr Saunders said.
Port Macquarie MP Leslie Williams also weighed in on the project, with some effusive words:
“It makes perfect sense in an area like Port Macquarie, where we have one of the highest uptakes of rooftop solar, that we can do the same on our government facilities including our health facilities,” she said.
“Obviously hospitals have a huge expanse of rooftop available, and some 2030 panels will go up there, making a significant saving for the local health district that can be invested back into frontline services.”
The solar system is expected to be built by mid-July and will also include energy performance monitoring – with over 9,000 lights replaced with high efficiency LED lights. A great step into the future and we look forward to seeing more hospitals installing solar systems on the top.