Farming the Sun
Farming the Sun is Australia’s most diverse community solar energy initiative to date. It is a large-scale collaboration coordinated by Starfish Initiatives and in 2011 was awarded a NSW Government Green Globe Award for its contribution to sustainability and installation of more than $6.7m worth of solar power, solar hot water, solar-thermal heating and cooling systems; training of more than three dozen tradespeople; and a massive level of community awareness and education in sustainable energy.
While Farming the Sun originally began in and focussed on the New England High Country, it has now expanded to focus in the NSW North Coast and Riverina regions as well.
In 2012 Farming the Sun shifted its focus to developing community solarfarms. This was made possible through a strategic alliance with Embark Australia, drawing upon their considerable expertise in community solar models.
This work is being successfully concluded with the creation of Australia’s first ever council operated and community funded solarfarms ~ Lismore Community Solarfarms in partnership with Lismore City Council.
Farming the Sun’s focus today has returned to community bulk-buying of solar energy technologies ~ see Bulk-Buys for details.