The Renewable Energy Trail

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[Music Plays] (Liz Veitch) This region’s not just got the natural resources but it’s also got each of the technologies represented and that’s what prompted us to think about using those technologies, forming them into a Renewable Energy Trail and building a fabulous resource that’s an education resource. It’s an industry resource. It’s also tourism, it’s bringing people into this region and when you go and have a look at Crookwell 2, you stop in Crookwell and you buy your woollen socks and you have a coffee and that’s really good for regional economies. So many school children are getting interested in renewables as it grows as an industry because underpinning all this is the environmental benefits. So, along the Renewable Energy Trail we’ve got a range of these technologies demonstrated, including Boco Rock Wind Farm. (Mark Wiggins) The use of wind has been around for centuries but in the last 20 years, the wind turbine industry itself has made large advancements in efficiencies. We see each year a different generation of turbine is brought out, more efficient, lighter, quicker to build and of course pushing the end of life, of design life now out to 25, 30 years. One thing that we’ve noticed here is the responsiveness. We’re monitored 24/7 by G.E. Network which allows us to have call out crews as required. (Liz Veitch) Further along the trail again is the Woodlawn Bio Reactor and this is an incredible place to visit. (Henry Gundry) The Woodlawn Bio Reactor receives about 40% of Sydney’s rubbish and our core objective is to stabilise the waste to produce methane and which is produced as electricity. We have six megawatts of installed capacity at the moment. We’re looking to put the seventh megawatt in, in 2017. So, yeah we’re expanding as we go. (Liz Veitch) They’re pulling the organic waste out and recycling it to rehabilitate a mine site which is fixing a really bad scar in the landscape and also they use the waste heat to warm water, to keep barramundi growing and thriving and then they then sell those fish into the local markets and we’re eating them in our restaurants. So, great regional economic development spin offs. [Music Plays] So, at Googong there is a mini hydro which is a fascinating little way of producing power. It is also a hugely scenic site with a Renewable Energy Trail sign up there to provide information on how that technology works. Further up to the north east of the trail we have Gullen Range Wind Farm which are now doing a really interesting experiment and they’re integrating solar in with the wind as well because obviously with renewables sometimes the wind blows, sometimes the sun shines. Here we are at the Goulbourn Visitor Information Centre, the site chosen by Tesla to host their first regional electric vehicles supercharging station. There are eight charging stations here, all powered by renewable energy. Just plug in and charge up. [Music Plays]

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