Solar Harvest Community Energy Co-operative Fair, clean, local energy Mon, 31 May 2021 01:49:08 +0000 en-AU hourly 1 Solar Harvest Community Energy Co-operative 32 32 It’s a long journey we have taken Mon, 18 Nov 2019 13:28:24 +0000

Eight people started it all when we met together in a lounge room in Nuriootpa in December 2017.  After 47 meetings we are close to achieving our goal: to be registered as a Community Energy Co-operative.

During this time we have consulted with interstate co-operatives and local energy advisors and participated in a Co-operative Incubator Programme that helped us towards our goal.  The RDA Barossa Gawler Light Adelaide Plains offered significant advice and help in the early stages.

Rules (our Constitution), a Disclosure Statement that outlines our Business Plan and the projected Financial incomes and expenditures, a web site, mailing list, processes for book-keeping and membership records and Privacy issues have all been worked on – and now we sit and wait for the Registrar for Co-operatives to give us the go-ahead for the next and final stage. This should happen within the next few days.

Once we have approval – then we can hold our Formation Meeting, approve the Rules and Disclosure Statement, appoint Directors and receive applications for membership.  And then its back to the Registrar for the final approval.  Then, and only then, will we be able to offer shares to prospective Members. 

After that –  what will happen?  Once Registered, we anticipate a growing interest from those who are keen to see renewable energy solutions rolled out across our region.  We will be an organisation supported by local people and working for local people. We want to be seen as a trusted advisor and provider of renewable energy resources across the Barossa, Gawler, Light and Adelaide Plains Council areas.

We might just make it before the end of the year, but whether we do or not, it will be in 2020 that we will begin to make a difference for small and medium size businesses and community organisations.

Announcing our new logo! Sat, 19 Oct 2019 23:00:18 +0000

A big step forward was made in the last few months with the creation of our logo thanks to the work of talented Nuriootpa High School student, Ryan Noack and the support of his teacher, Jasmine Centenera.  Solar Harvest sought assistance to develop a logo by inviting students with an interest in art and design to enter a design competition. We wanted to develop a clearly identifiable and visually distinctive identity in order to attract members and projects.  The Year 10 Design class at Nuriootpa High entered designs into the competition and Ryan Noack was recently announced as the winner.

We would like to thank all the Year 10 Design class for the work they prepared for our logo design competition.  We are very appreciative of the effort that the students made. 

The Co-op selected the design created by Ryan because we felt the sketch style of his design represented the inclusive and open nature of a co-operative. It was also visually appealing and creates a clear, distinct identity that a broad range of people would connect with and read as related to solar energy.

By its nature a co-operative is about connecting like-minded people to collectively make positive change.  The work from the Nuriootpa High students is a part of this and enables the co-op to communicate to others who they are and what they do.

]]> 0
Launch at Gawler Sustainable Living Festival Sun, 29 Sep 2019 15:50:47 +0000

2pm, Sunday 27 October 2019. Pioneer Park @ Speaker’s Tent

The Gawler Sustainable Living Festival is on Sunday 27 October 10am to 3pm.  The Solar Harvest crew will be speaking at 2pm about the story behind Solar Harvest, the benefits of becoming a member or hosting a project, and how to join or support our organisation 

The Solar Harvest Story Wed, 14 Aug 2019 02:26:02 +0000 Why does the Valley & Plains Community Energy Co-operative exist?

Well, energy has been in the news a lot lately. In the last three years, electricity prices have more than doubled. Obviously this makes running any organisation more challenging. In addition, we just have to walk outside to see that the environmental impacts of our continued fossil fuel use are becoming clear. 
The question that we have been wrestling with, is how do we ensure that community organisations and small to medium businesses, particularly in our region, which is the Barossa, Adelaide Plains and Gawler area, are able to put more of their available resources into serving their community while they reduce their impact on the environment? How can these organisations access capital and the know-how they need to install solar panels, battery storage or other energy efficiency measures?

We think we have the solution!

We are in the process of forming a cooperative where the equity raised from members’ contributions will allow solar panels to be installed on the roofs of our local organisations. The organisations will benefit from lower electricity prices and eventual ownership of the solar panels, while the members will receive modest returns on their investment.

This is really a win-win-win solution. Community organisations can instead use their money in direct services to the community, local businesses can continue to thrive, the local community gets to directly contribute to this and of course we all benefit from lower carbon emissions.

If you are a local community member who is concerned about the social and economic well-being of the broader Barossa and Adelaide Plains region and the environment in general, we need you to help contribute to solving this problem.

There are a few ways you can do this…

  • We would love to have you involved in our pre-formation group in whatever capacity you can, especially if you have skills in commerce, legal, marketing or design (or a heap of money!) but what’s most important is a passion for our region and our future.
  • Join our mailing list so as soon as we open memberships, you will get notified.
  • Get in touch with us if you know of any community organisations or small businesses that might be a good project site.
]]> 0
About Solar Harvest Wed, 14 Aug 2019 02:23:31 +0000 An exciting community energy project is being developed in the Barossa Valley.

Solar Harvest Community Energy Co-operative will be arriving very soon! Our plan is that the new Co-operative will be funded by local community members, owned by them and will supply renewable energy systems for local businesses.

The initial plan is to install solar panels on the roofs of local organisations, and sell the energy generated directly to those organisations.

The funds needed to purchase the solar panels will be raised from the community, and investors will receive their contribution back over a number of years, with interest.

This project will have many economic and environmental benefits for our community:

·Local businesses with solar installed will benefit from lower power costs

· The co-operative members will have their say in the way the co-operative runs and we anticipate they will receive a modest financial return on their investment in co-operative shares.

· The production of clean energy will have a positive impact in our environment. The solar systems will replace carbon-intensive energy sources and reduce global warming emissions.

]]> 0