Australia’s largest rooftop solar system
The rooftop solar installation at APP’s Oberon production facility
Newcastle-based renewable energy EPC, earthconnect Pty Ltd, recently switched on the largest roof-mounted Solar Energy System in the country.
Located in Oberon, NSW, the system is comprised of approximately 27, 000 solar panels, covering nearly 8 ha of roof space on Australian Panel Products’ (APP – formerly Borg Manufacturing) Oberon production facility. Covering what would otherwise be unused space, the system has a capacity of 10 MW, surpassing all previous installation records.
The system will provide APP with 14 GWh of clean renewable energy annually, all of which will be consumed on site. This system supplies APP with approximately one third of their required energy, whilst reducing their greenhouse gas emissions by around 15,000 tonnes annually. This system significantly expanded APP’s clean energy portfolio to a combined total of 16.3 MW of ‘behind the meter’ rooftop solar capacity. earthconnect will add a further 2.5 MW of solar capacity to APP’s renewable energy portfolio by the end of 2022.
The project was completed within the established 9-month timeframe, despite significant challenges arriving from shipping delays, raw material shortages, supply chain disruptions, inclement weather, and the effects of Covid-19.
Whilst this record-breaking system will significantly reduce APP’s environmental impact, it shall also generate significant savings through the reduction of power purchased from the grid. The importance of energy independence for such a large consumer of energy has been further highlighted after the Australian energy market prices skyrocketed in response to international events, forcing the market operator to suspend the spot power market.
APP’s Oberon rooftop solar system is the largest individual project delivered by earthconnect to date. Earthconnect will continue to deliver commercially significant energy systems, having a renewable energy installation portfolio of above 50 MW.