NSW Govt should install solar panels + LED lights in all public schools - and save $45M!

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We call on Matt Kean, Minister for Energy and Environment for the NSW Government, to install LED lighting and as many solar panels as possible in every public school in NSW within a 3 year period.

After the last major school strike, Australia’s school kids were told to get back to school. Having gone back to school we learnt that tackling climate change in our schools could save millions of dollars.

In March 2019, the School Energy Productivity Program issued a Government-funded report which showed:

1) NSW schools are spending too much money on energy.

2) By installing solar panels and LED lighting in every NSW public school we could save millions of dollars every year.

The report said: “There is a strong case for NSW Government investment in solar and lighting upgrades in around 2,200 NSW schools of approximately 817,500 light fittings upgraded and implementation of 69MW of additional solar capacity.” The report said this could save $45 million per year.

It could also “reduce electricity consumption by 185 GWH” and “reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 154,000 tonnes of CO2 per annum.”

It said the “estimated cost of a full deployment is between $280 - $320m dollars with a simple payback period between 6.45 and 7.35 years.”

The cost for implementing this can be paid for by the Government’s NSW Climate Change Fund. It could also be funded by commercial funding sources.

Implementing this won’t just save money. If we installed these panels, solar energy collected over the summer holidays could go into the grid - that would make the grid less likely to fall over on hot days.

If politicians want us to stop striking, first they need to stop wasting money on unnecessary energy use. So please sign this petition!

Estelle Dee,
Year 10 Student
Katoomba High School