February 8, 2024
South Burnett Regional Council will set aside $200,000 to install solar power in Council facilities in the hope it will receive a matching contribution from the State Government.
At January’s general meeting, Councillors were told the State Government had recently created a $2.5 million Community Energy Upgrades Fund (CEUF).
The CUEF will provide grants to councils which reduce energy bills and emissions from local government-owned facilities.
This CEUF aims to help Queensland meet its targets of 82 per cent renewable electricity generation and a 43 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030.
Applicants for CEUF funding are required to provide a 50 per cent cash contribution towards grant activities.
If successful, they will have 24 months after receiving grant funding to complete their project.
Councillors resolved to aside $200,000 from the 2023-24 Capital Works budget and authorise CEO Mark Pitt to submit an application to the first round of the CEUF program.
Officers said that if the grant application was successful, the Council would install solar power and other energy efficient upgrades to Council-owned buildings and community facilities such as swimming pools and libraries.
The facilities that would receive the upgrades would be ones identified as having the highest electricity usage.
Apart from helping the environment, this would recover Council’s contribution over a number of years through reduced electricity charges.
The motion to approve the CEUF grant application was moved by Cr Kirstie Schumacher, seconded by Cr Kathy Duff and carried unanimously.