Planet Ark Power tailored 17 solar power systems to the roof spaces and electrical layouts of 17 Regis Aged Care facilities. In total, this comprises 4400 solar panels covering a total area of 8564 ㎡, enough to cover 33 tennis courts and which is now generating 1.6 MW of electricity.
“It’s really important for corporate Australia to play a strong role in ensuring we move towards a carbon neutral economy,” says Planet Ark CEO Paul Klymenko. “So it is great to see Regis taking this major step in their sustainability journey, and we look forward to continuing our collaboration, which has environmental and economic benefits for Regis and their residents.”
During the rollout, Fiona Kirk (Regis Operations Manager) was surprised to discover the level of interest residents had in the Regis sustainability initiatives. “We have a lot of grandchildren and great-grandchildren visiting with families and our residents are concerned about their welfare. Having solar put onto our homes has been very well received by our residents.”
A key concern for Regis management when considering installations in their sensitive environments was the potential impact on their residents. But Fiona says Planet Ark Power was amazing, with site access strictly controlled using new technology that allowed site project managers to detect, monitor and manage the presence of workers.
Apart from technical expertise, Michael Horwood (Regis Executive General Manager – Property) found Planet Ark Power’s collaborative approach and good communication to be real strengths of the successful rollout. “We were never in doubt about what was happening, what the program was or what was going to happen next,” Michael says. “It’s really important for our facilities to understand what’s going to be happening so we can plan for it, and Planet Ark Power achieved that. We would recommend Planet Ark Power to any company that was looking to do solar installation.”
“To make the installation process seamless required a high degree of coordination between the sites to allow us to shut things down and then be able to reconnect the systems,” Shaun says. “We were very mindful of the residents, making sure not to disturb them or encroach on their areas, and restricting their access to our work areas for their own safety, too.”
Planet Ark Power invited the Regis project manager to join its team, literally. “That was really important,” Shaun recalls, “he attended meetings and provided the key link into Regis to ensure things could proceed smoothly. Our two organisations developed a great working relationship; Regis very much fitted with our culture of focusing on outcomes and working together collaboratively. That continues to be a strong part of the relationship post-commissioning. They know that if there are any problems we talk openly and honestly about them and we work things out together.”