Taking greener steps

Solar panels have been connected to the West Campus at St Peter''s College, Cranbourne.

By Brendan Rees

St. Peter’s College in Cranbourne has announced a $500,000 investment to ensure they reduce their carbon footprint.

All lighting at the West and East Campus was replaced early in the year with LED with solar panels also installed as part of its Sustainable School Building Program.

Principal Chris Black said the project would not only see the school’s energy bill drop but also formed part of the college’s sustainability objectives.

“St. Peter’s College undertook this work in partnership with Verdia. The business case prepared by Verdia calculates that the proposed project is cash-flow positive from day one; that is the electricity energy costs saved covers the project funding costs on a year to year basis,” he said.

This work was carried out with a Catholic Development Fund loan to the College.

Mr Black said the investment in solar panels would also help teach their students about renewable energy.

“The panels will be highly visible to parents, students and staff and will model the lessons taught in science around renewable energy sources,” he said.

The income generated will be available to support the learning needs of students in other areas of the curriculum, he added.

Mr Black said the panels would send a strong message that the College “not only talks the talk- but also invests in what we teach our students.”

“By using electricity generated from solar panels, St. Peter’s College can assist in reducing greenhouse gases.

“This is in line with the messages that students are currently taught in social justice programs and the message that environment groups within the College are promoting,” he said.

Greens South-East Metro MP, Nina Springle praised St Peter’s College’s initiative.”I’m really pleased to see St Peter’s College leading the way in the South East,” she said.

“This is where all schools and public institutions should be heading and I and the Victorian Greens will continue to strongly advocate for this sort of investment in renewable energy.”


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