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The University of Queensland (UQ) is focused on embedding sustainability on all its campuses and sites and across all areas of learning, discovery and engagement. UQ is a signatory to the Talloires Declaration and the Universitas 21 Sustainability Statement. The UQ Carbon Strategy overarches leading-edge energy efficiency programs, large scale renewable energy projects and other sustainability initiatives. The strategy’s flagship project is the 1.22 megawatt UQ Solar array – currently Australia’s largest flat-panel roof top PV system. The system generated over 1.7 million kilowatts of renewable energy in its first year of operation saving 1,700 equivalent metric tonnes of CO2 per annum.
It has provided a 5% reduction in the campus peak power demand and is expected to save $6.6 million in avoided electricity costs to 2025. The array underpins a number of cutting-edge research projects, in diverse fields including physics, engineering, economics and sustainability. One key research aim will address engineering issues on how these systems can feed into and integrate with the electricity grid. The system is the blueprint for vital solar energy infrastructure in urban and remote areas to ensure a cleaner and greener future for Australia.
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