SUNSHINE POWER: Patrick Halliday with the Sunpower high efficiency solar panel that is used to charge Rob Rosen's electric car
SUNSHINE POWER: Patrick Halliday with the Sunpower high efficiency solar panel that is used to charge Rob Rosen's electric car Veda Dante

Man on solar mission

ONE local man's mission to reduce greenhouse emissions has not only helped his back pocket but also his family's reliance on imported coal-fired fuel.

Brunswick Heads resident Robert Rosen said that, despite its range limitations, his 2012 Mitsubishi I-Miev electric car was a lot cheaper to run than other cars.

"It costs about two dollars for a full charge - that is assuming that around 50% of the power used is generated from my Sunpower high- efficiency solar panels," said Mr Rosen.

"The average distance a 'full tank' lasts when driving is 100km and despite the nearest charging stations being 80kms to the north and 630kms to the south, they still make a great second car for families," he said.

"They will also be an excellent option for those currently on solar feed in tariffs, who, once these tariffs come to an end, would otherwise be selling their excess solar power to power retailers for only 6-8c a kWh."

While it was only a matter of time before solar modules were used in the Northern Rivers region, renewable energy experts were calling for more support from local councils and businesses.

"Yes, it is early days for electric cars in Australia, but I can see some interesting partnerships evolving between building owners, businesses and vehicle owners," said Juno Energy director Patrick Halliday.

"We believe a renewal of the energy system and fuel in this area will provide numerous opportunities for skilled employment, education and innovation."


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