Community solar model rolled out in Australia


In what it hopes will be a pilot project, non-profit community renewable energy developer Embark has released plans to develop a 400 kW rooftop installation on the new Sydney International Convention, Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct.

While details on the project are scarce, Embark will collaborate with investor Lend Lease. Lend Lease is a part of the consortia developing the precinct.

The park is planned to be completed once the site is ready in 2016. In a statement announcing the installation, Embark said it will draw on experience it has built in community renewable energy assets elsewhere in the country. "It is anticipated this park will be a living example of how to develop medium scale solar," the group said in a statement.

Community solar allows individuals to invest in a solar array who cannot install solar on their own roof. It therefore has the potential to open up a new level of private investment into renewable energy.

Earlier this month, Solar Mosaic launched its website. It has created an online portal through which individuals can invest in a solar array.

Embark has experience building community owned wind assets and has said it is assisting community groups with projects. Only weeks ago, a community solar project was announced in the Australian city of Melbourne.