Category Archives: Economics

Community Funded Solar Project in WA

Transition Town Guildford and its members have been fund raising for Citizen’s Own Renewable Energy Network Australia (CORENA) for over a year now, collectively contributing over $1,100 towards various projects during this time.

We were very excited to learn that CORENA’s next project is in WA: the Nannup Community Resource Centre is next in line for a 10kW solar PV system, and it won’t cost them a cent. TT Guildford has already chipped in towards this project, including $50 raised at our monthly movie night this week. We invite you to chip in too, which you can do here.


CORENA (Citizens Own Renewable Energy Network Australia Inc.) provides interest-free loans of up to $20,000 to pay for community projects consisting of solar PV installations and energy efficiency measures for non-profit organisations. Recipient organisations pay back the loan just out of the resultant savings on their power bills, generally within 5 years. After that, the organisation continues to enjoy lower power bills for another 20-25 years, meaning more of their funds will be available to spend on valued community services.

Loan repayments from CORENA’s first 4 projects help to fund the Nannup solar PV installation, and the rest of the funds will be sourced from donations from people all over Australia, not just the Nannup area. TT Guildford is proud to be a contributor. Loan repayments from the Nannup CRC project will feed back into CORENA’s revolving funding pool to help fund future Quick Win solar projects. Once around 20 community funded solar projects have been completed, the funds in the revolving pool will be sufficient to continue funding one new project every month, forever, without needing any more donations.

CORENA is a non-profit organisation run entirely by volunteers. CORENA has raised over $57,000 to provide interest-free loans for solar power to non-profit community organisations in all parts of Australia. Over 40kW of solar PV capacity have already been installed, saving each of the respective community organisations thousands of dollars that are now available to serve the local community. Nannup CRC is CORENA’s 5th project.

We invite you to join us in chiping in to help fund the Nannup solar project. This will greatly reduce carbon emissions, not just for Nannup CRC but also for other non-profit organisations as your contribution revolves forward to help fund future CORENA projects, and that is something that benefits everyone.  For more details and to chip in, see


Draft Guildford Heritage Precinct Master Plan launched

Tonight the City of Swan ‘launched’ the Draft Guildford Heritage Precinct Master Plan in the Guildford town hall. This is a significant document that will shape the long-term future of the ‘Guildford Heritage precinct’ – ostensibly Meadow street between Swan and Helena streets. But will have significant implications for all Guildford residents and visitors.

The document is aimed at developing a long-term plan for the use and care of the heritage buildings, sites and streetscapes on Meadow street Guildford. The document has been prepared by a team of consultants (landscape planners, heritage architects, tourism professionals etc.) and will be available for download on the city website tomorrow. Hard copies of the report will also be available at the Midland/Guildford libraries and the Admin building.

It canvasses the best uses of the existing buildings and potential alternative uses (e.g. moving the Potters, Visitor centre, or Library etc.). Three major options are proposed, but elements from all options are up for debate.

It’s also a rather substantial document, ~100 pages apparently. Therefore, the City only provided a brief overview tonight and is giving residents 2 weeks to read and digest the report, before a feedback session (Monday 30th March, 6:30 pm). We encourage everyone to look at the sections of the report which interest them and make sure you come along to have input in 2 weeks time!

Guildford Heritage plan

Community Energy forum wrap

On Monday night we held a Community Energy Forum in Midland. It was short notice, but great to have the opportunity to hear from visiting Community Energy researcher Jarra Hicks. She outlined some of the inspiring community energy projects she’s visited around the world.

You can download a copy of Jarra’s slides here. Unfortunately there wasn’t enough battery to record all her presentation. So if you have video/camera expertise and would like to help in the future, please let us know. Thanks to Michelle Kwok for the Iphone videos below!

Barb’s take away messages from the Congress:

Jenny’s summary from the Congress of different community energy models:

 Download a PDF copy of Barb and Jenny’s slides

To finish the night, Tom Tolchard also presented a summary of the feedback we received at the Guildford Energy launch earlier in the year. Download a PDF copy of Tom’s slides

Following the Community Energy Forum on 21st July and our previous launch, we’re hosting two opportunities for people to come discuss what direction they would like Guildford Energy to take?

  • What should Guildford Energy focus on and aim to achieve?
  • What business model / financial arrangement / governance structure appeals to you?
  • Do you have any ideas for specific projects?
  • Are you interested in investing in such a project?

Join us for one of two facilitated discussions:

Opportunity 1:

Date: Tuesday, 19th August
Venue: Stirling Arms Hotel
Time: 7 pm start

More details and please RSVP

Opportunity 2:
Date: Saturday, 23rd August
Venue: Mechanics Institute
Time: 1 pm start
More details and please RSVP

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