A South Australian reservoir that supplies the drinking water for nearly half of metropolitan Adelaide is set to go solar, with the installation of a 12MW ground-mounted solar kicking off this week.
The 30,000-panel installation at the Happy Valley Reservoir is one of 33 PV arrays being installed across SA Water sites, as the state government-owned utility rolls out a total of 154MW of solar as part of its Zero Cost Energy Future project.
“The Zero Cost Energy Future project is an ambitious project for SA Water to use renewable energy to reduce its largest operational expense – electricity,” said Speirs.
“The solar array was reconfigured to fit in a smaller area and a 40-metre buffer of pine trees was retained between the panels and nearby Black Road.
“This is a fantastic result which still enables SA Water to achieve its energy management target as well as preserve and enhance the surrounding natural environment.”
According to the SA Water website, the solar panels for the project will be assembled off-site, using 5B’s rapid deployment solar-in-a-box Maverick technology. The folded and packed panels are then transported to the Reservoir Reserve, rolled out and placed into position.
The utilities, under an umbrella organisation called Zero Emissions Water Ltd (ZEW), signed a deal with the 200MW Kiamal Solar Farm – Victoria’s largest such project at that time, developed in the state’s north-west by Total Eren.