At the Halls Gap botanical gardens, located at the base of the Grampians, government officials and private firms gathered to launch the Grampians Community Power Hub (GCPH).
Members of BREAZE Inc., Sustainability Victoria and the Halls Gap Botanical Gardens were in attendance for the launch along with the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D'Ambrosio and Northern Grampians Shire Council mayor Tony Driscoll.
The Halls Gap Botanical Gardens are looking to expand their services and in partnership with BREAZE and the GCPH, they want to install their own renewable energy systems.
Halls Gap Botanical Gardens convenor Margo Sietsma said she was excited to work together with BREAZE and the GCPH to learn how to install the community renewable energy project.
"We are really looking forward to meeting the BREAZE team to learn the best way to install solar power on the Botanic Gardens buildings," she said.
"We are very much excited about the prospect of having lighting and power to charge electronics such as tools and laptops.
As part of the project, the Halls Gap Botanical Gardens wants to install a three to four kilowatt array of solar panels, which includes a four-seven kilowatts of battery storage.
Ms Sietsma the garden having its own supply of electricity will make all the difference.
"We are very happy that we have been able to work out what we can easily do here," she said.
"We would love to have a drip of electricity to recharge them and computer connection in the shed.
"It will make our work so much easier. We love having people here to enjoy the native flora."
Minister for Energy, Environment, and Climate Change and Solar Homes Lily D'Ambrosio was also in attendance and said she was proud to see community-led renewable energy projects beginning in the region.
"It's wonderful to see the Grampians Community Power Hub helping organisations across the broader Grampians region," she said.
"The hub will support local community groups to develop and deliver community energy projects and be a part of the renewables revolution. This is all a part of our plan to halve emissions by 2030."
"We're investing in the Grampians Community Power Hub because we know that community energy plays such an important role in building local support for renewable energy."
The GCPH in partnership with BREAZE Inc. involves identifying reneable energy projects and identifying "shovel-ready," via strategic networking and expertise.
Communities themselves need to drive project funding and implementation - although the Hub will assist with identifying funding pathways.
Engaging with communities across the Grampians region, the GCPH will assist the development of projects that might range from small scale solar PV and micro-grids to larger community-scale battery or utility wind and solar.
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