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Previous Minutes Transition Nelson Energy Group
updated 12 Nov 2008
TRANSITION NELSON ENERGY GROUP Previous Minutes
Minutes of Meeting – Wednesday, 22 October 2008
Baloo, Peter Olorenshaw, Katy Steele, Mark Heathfield, Robert Wallace, Jim Maxwell, Joanna Plows.
Ideas for Governance Committee :
1) Protect the natural environment – reduce the use of fossil fuels and the particulate level.
Suggestion – to identify those institutions which still burn fossil fuel, eg: schools.
Replace coal – establish a pellet factory plant
Funding from EECA for feasibility studies
Our role could be as a ‘catalyst’ group to enable funding of these projects
Ceiling Insulation – every home in Nelson should have this
Daylighting – on single storey commercial buildings - 1/3 of the load is usually lighting so with daylighting, 1/3 is saved.
Funding for a Sustainable Business Advisor
Need an energy auditor to visit commercial buildings .
Bulk purchasing – like in the UK – of energy efficient appliances that citizens can pay off over time - Katy.
Noel Leeming offer cash incentives to get rid of old fridges which are disposed of in an environmentally responsible manner – Joanna.
The Nelson City Council (NCC) should much more be a governing body on these issues.
Promote these ideas for the Long Term Council Plan (LTCP) in the Leader and stimulate community feedback –Baloo.
Build local power generation – local resilience
Diversified power not just one system; generate own power – the Local Government Act 2002 gives NCC this right.
Modify rules on power meters for reasonable remuneration
Solar City – photo voltaics as well as water.
Combined heat and power systems work best
Solar panels produce well but just on sunny days; need to broaden our options
Intelligent fridges and freezers – automatic turn off when not needed
Ripple Control – power companies can do this now – could use this system with freezers too.
Have 2 plugs – one of-peak and one peak – so choose economy or full power; night-store heaters were good like this.
GOAL: to set up our own local power company, co-ordinating the generation as well.
power prices rising, companies only interested in ‘selling’ electricity not doing transmission, etc efficiently.
Letter to the Hospital re alternative power system –“Here’s the principle” – can use it for other institutions – Peter.
At present, only 50% of the methane from landfill is used for powering the hospital.
3) Strong Economy :
Employment opportunities associated with energy efficiency projects and energy audits and local power generation.
Any state or local council building to be energy efficient and use local labour.
The NCC building is diesel heated at present; could use a Combined Heat & Power system.
The NCC use the sewerage as an energy source be it biodiesel or methane.
As a community, we should be researching all local transport fuel sources.
Liquid fuels will become more important.
Healthy Land, Sea and Air :
Encourage the NCC to encourage farmers to install methane digestors to process animal waste and generate power.
4) Kind, Healthy People :
DIY demos – biogas production. Engage and educate the community.
In terms of resilience :
Call for a review of pulling out good, efficient , dry firewood burners –
Review this in the Air Quality Plan and allow their use.
In Christchurch, if everyone pulls out their burners, there will not be enough electricity to cover the heat demand.
5) A Fun, Creative Culture :
Regional identity – a ‘Solar City’; a Transition Town city
Goal : to become a Transition Town region or a sustainable city.
Minutes for Energy Group 15-Oct-08
- The group agreed to focus energies on working a proposal for the City Council "10 Year Vision" with due date 14 Nov.
- We agreed Peter will send us a draft to propose hospital purchasing a Chip Wood heater-generator instead of upgrading it's diesel emergency generator.
- Baloo presented options for simple to fabricate kits that can help us capture/generate electricity at a home level.
- Simon shared with us more in deep information re: Solar City
City Council 10 Year Vision
We found this a great opportunity to influence government plans by submitting a document with our proposal. We will meet in one week time 22-Oct-08 focusing specifically on this document.
Please everybody work their ideas in advance so we are ready to share and write the document.
Peter commented that by purchasing a wood chip generator instead of upgrading the diesel emergency generator, the following benefits can be achieved:
- Reduce the ongoing cost of electricity for the Hospital
- Improve efficiencies by generating the electricity locally vs having to transport from the south of the island with it's associated transmission losses and infrastructure cost.
- Reduce our dependency on far away power plants and start generating locally.
- The use of wood chip generator has a positive impact on the environment when compared with burning fossil fuels.
Peter will email us a draft to present to hospital. We will review and present comments at meeting.
Kits for energy capture/generation
Baloo presented several options for low cost, low tech, simple "do it yourself" kits. This with the objective of building confidence in the principle of distributed generation and store of energy.
Once confidence is created, individuals can take action in the solution vs. leaving all to government and big companies.
Ideas discussed were: Stirling engine, steam engine, tidal generators, drum wind and hydraulic generators, hose water solar heater, biodigesters, solar panel and hydrogen.
Day-lighting included in commercial buildings
It was presented that approx 30% of commercial business electricity is consumed on electricity to illuminate business. If an amendment to building regulations includes day-lighting for businesses this can produce interesting power savings for the region.
It was presented the idea of implementing a team for energy audits. The audits could show a simple evaluation for commercial and private dwellings on how efficient they are on energy use and simple recommendations.
Solar City project
It was agreed that the project has enough inertia and our energy group doesn't need to take any specific action to make this happen. The companies Aqua Flow and Wind Flow in coordination with government are conducting a feasibility analysis to launch a pilot project with the objective of installing 1,000 water solar heaters in the Top of the South.
Minutes for Energy Group Taken on 29th Sep 08
- Two subjects were the main focus of this meeting: solar water heating and house insulation.
- Contact person changed from Tony to Baloo.
- Initially meetings will be held fortnightly on Wednesdays. Next meeting 15 Oct 5:30pm @ Nelson Environment Centre.
- Energy Shift, an initiative from Nelson City Council has allocated $20k for a solar water heating feasibility study. Results to be released end of year. Objective is to get different companies to offer their solutions and monitor their performance (quality control).
- Insulation on houses. If insulating the roof is cheaper than the floor and more heat is lost trough the roof than the floor, why is it mandatory to insulate all house to get the grant? Suggest an option to insulate only the roof where the biggest gains are.
- Health Project issues grants to retrofit houses of low income owners covering up to 60% of the cost.
- Suggested to compile a graph showing dollar for dollar, what gives the most benefits to the nation. E.g. compare solar heating, photovoltaic, insulation, etc.
- Should courses be offered to builders and architects on energy efficient houses, solar water heaters, etc. to raise awareness at the source?
Should the government offer incentives to owners and architects that incorporate energy efficient principles on building new houses?
- Would be nice to have monthly DVD sessions
- It was shown to us a book from the Department of Internal Affairs: Building Sustainable Urban Communities
- Should we establish a communication line with NMIT to impact on courses like plumbing, building, etc?
- Check on the possibility of inviting Philipa Chapman from Victoria University, an expert on insulation.
- Keith to circulate information on savings by house insulation.
- Suggest a get together shared lunch for a hands on building prototypes on diverse energy generators. A fun day to socialize and develop “energy toys”. E.g. Fuel Cell, Hydrogen, Photovoltaic, wind / water generators, steam engine, water heating, stirling engine, solar cooker, etc.
Minutes from Transition Nelson Launch 13/09/08
Summary – Three key points
1. Decentralised production
2. Support path of Council on Insulation
3. Hot Water Scheme – Solar City
4. Local authorities NCC alignment with Transition towns
Vision for Energy Nelson in 2020
Smaller circle economy (relocalisation)
Non-motor transport of large goods
Natural building materials
City Council – replace wood burners
Nelson NZ’s first solar city
Electric cars 70% less pollution
Greens 1 million to retrofit homes
- Simon solar heating
- Bio gas
- Subsidize photovoltaics
- Get council to inspect house installation