Brisbane Airport to invest in largest solar panel system in Australia

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Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) is investing in a major renewable energy Solar PV project capable of generating more than 9,315,000kWh a year.

The installation is set to be the biggest of its kind in Australia, placing 22,000 panels across an area spanning 36,000m² (387,500ft²) across six Brisbane Airport sites. Brisbane Airport’s International Terminal alone will support 1.98MW with 7,133 panels covering more than 11,675m² (125,668ft²), also making it the largest commercial rooftop solar system in the Southern Hemisphere.

Krishan Tangri, BAC general manager, assets, said, “We are acutely aware of the increasing energy needs of running a major airport and since 2012 we’ve had an extensive energy reduction program in place resulting in the completion of 40 projects which collectively save more than 8GWh per year.

“We are in the enviable position of having thousands of square meter of unimpeded roof space ideal for solar harvesting and, with systems becoming more efficient and more affordable to install, it makes financial sense to invest in this readily available supply of renewable energy to save costs and decrease our carbon footprint.

“Once fully operational, the new system will account for 18% of BAC’s direct electricity consumption, or 6% of our total consumption, further complementing the savings we’re making through air conditioning control optimization, lighting control upgrades and LED technology within BAC buildings, car parks and street lighting.”

The solar energy generated per year is equivalent to powering over 1,700 Australian homes for a year, with carbon offset equal to planting over 50,000 trees or taking 1,500 cars off the road each year. Design of the system is currently underway, with installation commencing in December 2017 and completion expected in August 2018. 

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Kirstie joined the team in early 2017 and brings writing, communications and client experience with her. Now an assistant editor, she produces content for magazines Passenger Terminal World and Postal and Parcel Technology International and their websites. Away from the office, you will find her struggling along the pavements of Surrey as she trains for the Great South Run, blogging on her lifestyle website or searching the internet for photos of sausage dogs.

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