Local schools to gain from new rooftop solar program

Caitlyn WattsPilbara News
Horizon Power acting manager of customer experience peter Howe, Minister for Education and Training Sue Ellery and the Member for Pilbara Kevin Michel at Port Hedland Primary School to announce the Regional Solar Schools Program.
Camera IconHorizon Power acting manager of customer experience peter Howe, Minister for Education and Training Sue Ellery and the Member for Pilbara Kevin Michel at Port Hedland Primary School to announce the Regional Solar Schools Program. Credit: Danielle Raffaele/Danielle Raffaele

Six Karratha schools are among those set to benefit from a new solar program to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save on energy costs.

Education Minister Sue Ellery was in Hedland recently to launch the $5 million Solar Schools Program which would be delivered by the Department of Education and Horizon Power.

The program will provide rooftop solar systems to 30 regional public schools across WA including Karratha Primary School, Karratha Senior High School, Millars Well Primary School, Pegs Creek Primary School and Tambrey Primary School.

It is set to reduce the school’s greenhouse gas emissions by more than 2000 tonnes each year, equal taking about 400 cars off the road.

Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery said the program would also create new practical ways for students and teachers to acquire new skills in STEM areas such as solar technology.

Energy Minister Bill Johnston said it was an opportunity for schools to save money on their energy expenses.

“Energy is a significant expense for our schools and this program will allow them to each save 27 per cent on electricity costs, collectively, that’s $1.7 million worth of savings each year,” he said.

The initiative forms part of the McGowan Government’s $200 million School Maintenance Blitz announced last year.

About 12 new full-time jobs across WA are set to be created during the 18-month construction period as well as two new Aboriginal electrical apprenticeships.

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