In community energy: Both the Upper Ovens and Kiewa valleys are only serviced by a single power line. Should these be damaged by severe weather events, electricity could be down for weeks eg Corryong and Mallacoota during the 2019 bushfires and more recently, Mt Dandenong after severe storms. The frequency of these events is predicted to rise significantly from four in a lifetime for those born in 1950 to fourteen in a life time if born today. Consequently, building community-based energy sources will also build our energy resilience. Rooftop solar, batteries (household and neighbourhood), heat pump hot water systems and electric vehicles with bidirectional batteries are all here now. More sustainable house construction will increase bushfire resilience, creating healthy, comfortable and energy efficient homes to better cope with our changing climate.
In our natural environment: David Attenborough and other academics argue that an unwanted legacy of the 20th century is the loss of plant and animal biodiversity. Consequently, our goal is to save as much as we can before – hopefully – population pressures decline and environmental disasters start to recede in around 50 years. However, this will only be the case if we take action. Participating in activities such as Landcare, community gardens, Alpine Parks, wisely recycle, cut down on plastic usage, home compost and grow food locally are all part of restoring nature’s resilience.
Financial resilience: 33% of homes in the Ovens Valley have solar PV panels saving around $1.5million last year. Yackandandah has 58%! Dr Saul Griffin the author of ‘Rewiring Australia’ says the all-electric home should save households up to $5000 a year.
Speakers and Topics:
Dr Helen Haines MP (Local Power Plan)
Sarah Nicholas Alpine Mayor(Living carbon neutral)
Sarah Buckley Sustainability Officer (Alpine Shire Carbon Action Plan)
Dennis Lambert SUO (Carbon Action Plan)
Bobbie McKibben Solar Integrity (Quality solar PV)
Heath Shakespeare Indigo Power (Heat pump hot water)
Matt Charles Jones Mondo (Project Edge and household battery scheme)