Speakers and presenters

North Coast Energy Forum ~ Friday, 25 November 2016 – Coffs Harbour


We are excited about the calibre and breadth of speakers presenting at this year’s forum.  The program features:

  • Adam Marshall – NSW Parliamentary Secretary for Renewable Energy
  • Dr Mark Diesendorf – distinguished renewable energy academic and author
  • Giles Parkinson – North Coast journalist and publisher of RenewEconomy
  • Nicky Ison – Australia’s leading community energy expert

Nicky Ison – Australia’s leading community energy expert

Nicky nicky-isonIson is a Founding Director of the Community Power Agency, a Senior Research Consultant at the Institute for Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology, Sydney and Coordinator of the Coalition for Community Energy. She is an expert in the field of energy policy and community renewable energy and has worked with and visited over 50 community energy groups in Australia, Europe and the US. Nicky has a detailed understanding of the working of Australia’s energy system. Relevant projects include co-authoring the Homegrown Power Plan, lead authorship of the National Electricity Market Report Card and the National Community Energy Strategy, developing energy price projections and contributing to the Decentralised Energy Roadmap. She is the former Convenor of the Solar Citizens Steering Committee. In 2014, Nicky was recognised on the Australian Financial Review’s 100 Women of Influence List.

Concurrent Session Presenters

This year – the program includes four breakout sessions (of which every participant can attend two).

  • Batteries for Business
  • Low Carbon Communities
  • Local Energy Systems
  • Low Carbon Councils

Each of these session will have multiple presenters to give you indepth information, case studies and practical knowledge. Full details of all the presenters will be with you soon.  Here are two of our presenters:

Tosh Szatow – Presenting in Local Energy Systems

tosh-szatowTosh is Director and co-founder of Energy for the People, and The People’s Solar, two social enterprises focused on enabling the rapid transition to a clean, distributed energy market that works in the interests of people and communities. Since 2012, collectively they have managed energy projects over $15m in value, worked with ground breaking community energy projects in Tyalgum (NSW) and Newstead (VIC), and raised over $250,000 for community solar projects. Tosh has a particular interest in the role of cheap energy storage in our future market, how the energy market transition can be managed efficiently and fairly.

Barbara Albert – Presenting in Low Carbon Councils


Barbara is the director of Sustainable Business Consulting and co-founder of 100% Renewables. She works with businesses and councils on carbon reduction, energy management, and mapping out the path to 100% renewable energy. She is a preferred supplier for the NSW and Federal Governments and a trusted advisor to many local Government jurisdictions. She is the author of the book ‘Energy Unlimited – Four Steps to 100% Renewable Energy’, which will come out in December this year.



Our next newsletter will reveal the full forum program. We look forward to seeing you there.

Mark Byrne
Convenor, for the organising committee, North Coast Energy Forum

Program Highlights

Program Highlights

North Coast Energy Forum ~ Friday, 25 November 2016 – Coffs Harbour

As we put the finishing touches on this year’s forum program, we’d like to share some highlights with you.

NCEF 2016 Theme

“The local energy revolution: Solar plus batteries plus us”: How solar and batteries are revolutionising the energy system from a centralised to a localised model in which power returns to the people. The key questions are: How can we, in the mid North Coast, play an active part in this shift? What are the opportunities for my local community, business or organisation?
Program highlights

  • Keynote talks from renewable energy guru Dr Mark Diesendorf and North Coast journalist and publisher of RenewEconomy website Giles Parkinson. Both talks will address the opportunities and challenges for the Mid North Coast from the revolutionary changes happening in the energy sector globally and nationally.
  • In-depth sessions on batteries for business, low carbon communities, low carbon councils and local energy systems. This is where we turn from big picture thinking to local action.
  • Interactive plenary sessions on current energy initiatives on the Mid North Coast and future prospects.

Also included this year: Outside the forum pavilion, a battery expo, open all day to all at no cost, featuring some of the best new tech batteries for the home and business. Plus great local wholefood catering from the renowned folk at The Happy Frog

Our next newsletter will feature more details about these great learning opportunities.

We trust this inspires you to grab a earlybird ticket (available until 24th October.  NB: now extended to 7th November).

Please contact Susanna Carpi at events@ncef.net.au if you have any questions regarding the tickets or ticketing.

Save the Date! North Coast Energy Forum

Friday, 25 November 2016 – Coffs Harbour

We are pleased to announced the North Coast Energy Forum is on again!  This year we are hosting the Forum in Coffs Harbour on the 25th November, continuing the tradition of holding each event in a different part of the North Coast.

For the fifth time since the first Forum in Belligen in 2010, we will bring together decision-makers from government, business and the community to work on creating a sustainable energy system for our region.

This year the theme is “The local energy revolution: Solar plus batteries plus us”. Our focus is on how solar and batteries are revolutionising the energy system from a centralised to a localised model in which power returns to the people. The key questions are: How can we, in the mid North Coast, play an active part in this shift? What are the opportunities for my local community, business or organisation?

Alongside the Forum we will be holding a free battery expo with products from the main makers and local suppliers.

We will bring you all the venue, program and further ticketing information in the lead-up to the forum.

For those extra keen to book your spot, tickets are now available here.

We look forward to bringing you another dynamic and involving event to support the local energy revolution.


Energy Drinks – One Week Away

Wednesday 18th November, 5-8pm

Book your free ticket!

Keep up to date with what is happening in the area around sustainable energy and meet and network with passionate individuals.

Now in its fifth year, the North Coast Energy Forum brings together industry, government and community to learn, share and progress renewable energy in the North Coast.  This year’s networking event has limited places so reserve your tickets at http://www.trybooking.com/JJHY.


Updates from the Tyalgum Energy Project

A Plan for Energy Self Sufficiency

The last few months have been positive for the Tyalgum community energy project in exploring the feasibility of independent energy supply, with the release of the feasibility study developed by Energy For The People. Funded after successfully winning a grant from the Office of Environment and Heritage, Energy for the People were engaged to develop a project plan for the community of Tyalgum to implement. Consultation and workshops were held in May with the Tyalgum community to build a better understanding of what energy solutions are available, and how to go about developing viable energy initiatives locally. The recently released ‘Transition Tyalgum: A Plan for Energy Self Sufficiency’ analyses feedback and makes recommendations on how to proceed It can be downloaded from the Energy for the People website.

The Tyalgum Energy Project team have been doing copious amounts of research into investment and management models as part of the first phase of the project and have installed twenty energy usage meters into houses and businesses and with another forty intended for the coming months. Phase one hopes to start ‘full steam ahead’ in the new year.  

The Tyalgum Energy Project team are looking currently for dedicated people to help facilitate initiatives throughout the village and help promote and have been inundated recently with media coverage and information and support for the project.

To find out more or become involved:


E: kacey@australianradiotowers.com

M: +61 423 879 235


Lismore Community Solar

Another successful project milestone!

On the 13th October Lismore City Council approved the borrowing of $360,000 in total from Farming the Sun – Lismore Community Solar!

These loans ($180,000 each) are the central legal agreement between Lismore City Council and each of the Community Solar companies. Each loan will fund a 100kW solar farm ~ one at each of Goonellabah Sports & Aquatic Centre and the Wyrallabah Sewage Treatment Plant. Any surplus funds ~ noting that the actual cost for each solar farms will be determined by an open public tender ~ are to be applied projects identified in the Lismore City Council Renewable Energy Master Plan (REMP).

We would like acknowledge the significant ‘behind the scenes’ support and work by Farming the Sun project collaborators ~ particularly Lismore City Council, Embark Australia and Norton Rose Fulbright ~ in putting these mutually beneficial loan agreements together.

Finalising negotiations on the loan terms, particularly the interest rate and repayment schedule, took longer than anticipated to finalise. It had become evident that the interest rate needed to be lowered to be competitive with the soft economic conditions and market. The Farming the Sun team are now updating and finalising the Offer Document for interested investors.

Please sign the ‘pledge’ if you are interested to find out more when the offer becomes available. Over 106 people have signed to express their interest.FtheSun

Energy Drinks Night @ Byron Bay

Come and get energised

DATE 5-8pm Wednesday 18th November

WHERE Byron Community Centre, Cavanbah Room

BOOK http://www.trybooking.com/JJHY


Enova Energy Half Way to Target


In 7 Weeks since the Share Offer opened, Enova Energy is closing on half way to achieving the minimum start-up capital target of $3 million.  

Become a share holder!

Help create Australian history, pre-register online to be part of this exciting venture and meet the Enova team at upcoming information meetings. 

For more details:



Join us at COREM’s Fundraising Launch

COREM’s Fundraising Launch

4 – 10pm Sunday 18th Oct at the Mullum Civic Hall

The Fundraising Launch is a celebration and vibrant reflection of Mullumbimby and it’s passion for sustainability and the power of people coming together to work towards a common goal. All proceeds will be donated to our first Community Owned Renewable Energy Project on the Drill Hall.


MC’d by Mandy Nolan, Gabriel & Cecilia, Joel Salom, Dustyesky

Electric Garden Silent Disco with XFacta – MizBoogie Bird – Kanopi 

Big Picture Panel

Dr Muriel Watt, Giles Parkinson, Mayor Simon Richardson, Katrina Shields, Alison Crook (Enova), Tiffany Harrison (BZE)

COREM Committee Panel as well as Satima Ornano from Kindred Youth


Discounted tickets $15 full, $12 concession ($20 & $15 at the door)

Kids are FREE:) For full details click here


The final solar panel on Broken Hill solar power plant installed!

Broken Hill- header

Monday, 12 October 2015


Minister for Industry, Resources and Energy, Anthony Roberts and Environment Minister Mark Speakman today visited Broken Hill for the installation of the final solar panel on AGL’s new 53 MW Broken Hill solar power plant.

The plant, which will generate enough renewable energy to power the equivalent of 17,000 homes, is the second solar power plant opened by AGL this year.

Earlier this year AGL opened its 102 MW Nyngan solar power plant.

Mr Roberts said that the NSW Government was delighted to support the development and uptake of utility-scale solar power in the state by contributing $64.9 million to the development of the Broken Hill plant and its sister plant at Nyngan.

“The government is committed to increased renewable energy generation in NSW and this plant is evidence there is a new era for large scale renewable energy in NSW.

“Today’s event, the installation of the last of 677,760 solar PV modules covering more than 14 hectares at Broken Hill, marks an important milestone for regional NSW and its contribution to the growth of large-scale solar; boosting the amount of renewable energy in NSW.

“I congratulate AGL for its commitment to renewable energy.”

Mr Speakman said that the Broken Hill and Nyngan plants were producing reliable and affordable clean energy and multiple environmental, economic and social benefits.

“It’s the culmination of many years of work by researchers, industry, government and the community. We’ve created a new era for large-scale solar energy in the Southern Hemisphere,” Mr Speakman said.

“NSW is leading Australia in supporting the clean energy sector, which contributes to lower energy costs and provides employment and investment particularly in regional communities.”

Media: Norm Lipson (Roberts) 0429 081 428/ Michael Cox (Speakman) 0429 465 227