Savings from the sun
Work is becoming easier, more efficient and less costly on a Central Australian cattle station - thanks to the sun.
Epenarra, which is 200km east of Tennant Creek and runs 8,500 head, has 13 bores.
A ‘bore run’ to check and refill the diesel motors used to be a 360km round trip.
But since buying the station in 2019, the family-owned BASS Cattle Company has upgraded 11 bores to solar power and added remote monitoring systems.
“This has had a dramatic effect on the time and expense it takes to run the property,” says company director Suzanne Bassingthwaighte. “It has cut the bore run to once a week, down from three.
“This means we are using less fuel and have significantly lowered our vehicle maintenance.”
She says a $20,000 grant from the Territory Government’s Smarter Business Solutions program was a “significant help in allowing us to continue the water development in a dry year.”
“The benefits both economically and environmentally will be seen for years to come.”
It is expected that diesel costs will be cut by $28,500 per year and maintenance costs by 50% to $600 per year.
ThinkWater Alice Springs was contracted for the supply and installation of the solar bores.
Ms Bassingthwaighte says applying for the grant from the Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade was a “simple process”.
Smarter Business Solutions grants are available to Territory businesses, Aboriginal enterprises and not-for-profit organisations to help to reduce day-to-day energy, water, waste and material costs.
Our small business champions will be at the Northern Territory Cattlemen’s Association Conference at the Alice Springs Convention Centre on 25 and 26 March.
Visit us the Northern Territory Government stand to find out more about Smarter Business Solutions and other support programs for Territory businesses.