Solar

Wilson and Sharma celebrate subsidised solar for Double Bay sailing club

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Like it or loathe it, federal Labor’s newly released climate and renewable energy plan appears to have acted as a sort of defibrillator to the Morrison government’s policy flat-line.

Pre-election campaigning has begun! And hard at work has been the assistant minister for energy and emissions reduction, Tim Wilson, out and about campaigning on climate and energy and showcasing “technology solutions.”

Wilson on Monday Tweeted a photo of himself and the member for Wentworth, Dave Sharma, checking out the solar panels installed at the Double Bay Sailing Club, funded through the Morrison government’s Powering Communities Program.

This didn’t go down quite as well with the Twitterverse as Wilson might have hoped, considering Double Bay is one of the most affluent – and expensive to live in – suburbs in Australia, let alone NSW.

To be fair, however, the Double Bay Sailing Club does appear to meet (at least some of) the eligibility for the now-closed funding scheme, as a not-for-profit organisation run by volunteers.

Other eligibility requirements for the up to $12,000 on offer through the scheme were that the organisation must be invited to apply for the grant by their local MP – each electorate was given a total of $67,700 to disperse.

Still, the DBSC seems like an unusual choice to be hand-picked for a helping hand, given members are required to pay *$450 a year for membership and given the deep fundraising pool that might be available through those members to buy some solar panels.

It is also interesting to note that on the DBSC website, a news item from February of this year thanks the NSW government for its generous help towards completion of Stage 1 of the club’s solar project, which covered the western roof section “entirely” in solar panels.

“We estimate that this size system should generate more than the club’s power needs, and make it a net supplier of green electricity to the grid and the local community,” the post says.

“Future stages will eventually entail covering the entire roof with solar,” it adds. “Stay tuned for Stages 2, 3, 4 and 5!”

The point is, Wilson is passionate about technology solutions, mostly solar panels. His Twitter profile page banner even has a picture of him at a solar farm!

On Saturday, Wilson posted a snap of himself getting a “warm reception” in one of the suburbs of his own inner Melbourne electorate of Sandringham, where he discussed the Morrison government’s plans to take climate action The Australian Way. Apparently that includes cutting back on spell-check for the LNP’s pamphlets.

Can you spot the typo?

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*This article was amended to correct an error in the cost of annual membership to the Double Bay Sailing Club – it is $450 a year, not $3,000 as previously stated. The $3,000 amount relates to the annual affiliation fee the club pays Australian sailing.

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