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Our friends at Natimuk Community Energy have a big project and are looking for new members to join them. Please spread the word about this appeal.

Over the past 18 months significant progress has been made on the Natimuk Community Solar Farm and we are now seeking new supporters from the Grampians region and beyond.

Building on the considerable work of many local volunteers over several years, Natimuk Community Energy has been working to progress the design and approvals of our 1.6 MW community-owned solar farm, sized to match the power usage of our small town of 500 people in the Wimmera. Recent achievements include securing a project site, progressing the design, engaging the assistance of new project managers and completing the detailed electricity grid modelling. This has kept us well on track to having a construction ready project in 2022, when we will be seeking community investment from the Grampians region and beyond.

Read more: Natimuk Community Solar Farm

cph showcaseCommunities around Ballarat are taking energy matters into their own hands.

The Community Power Hub Ballarat (CPH) showcased its projects at an event in Ballarat on February 11, 2020.   CPH worked with community and local organisations to identify and test the feasibility of community renewable energy projects.  Some of the projects presented were:

  • emPowering East Grampians Health Services – Our flagship project which is to progressively install 500kW of solar panels across EGHS’ buildings, reducing power costs and allowing redirection of funds to health services for its local communities.
  • Public Carparking with Roof Mounted Solar Panels – developing a design that can provide weather protection, while generating green energy and integrating electric vehicle charging.
  • An energy co-operative in a farming community that has investigated how to share its solar electricity generation between farms and residential properties.
  • Regional Cemetery Green Power – managing the transition from fossil fuel powered systems to solar for grounds maintenance, irrigation and public facilities.

Rochelle Kirkham, reporter for The Courier, wrote an article regarding the Community Power Hub, which appeared in the newspaper on JANUARY 28th 2020. "Hospital to cut electricity costs with solar panels" - "It is estimated the solar installation will save the organisation $1.65 million, based on current electricity costs, over the 25-year lifetime of the system."

BREAZE was appointed by Sustainability Victoria in July 2017, to establish the Community Power Hub Ballarat (CPH Ballarat). This entity worked to assist renewable energy projects in our region.

BREAZE received additional funding from the Victorian Government to assist with the implementation of its “pipeline” Community Power Hub Ballarat Projects until 30 June 2020.

The Community Power Hub Ballarat Project team held this public event to showcase and provide updates on CPH Ballarat’s exciting community projects, resource requirements and the knowledge gained through this program.

Read more: Community Power Hub Project Showcase

CPH Ballarat Stacked Logo Reversed on BlueBREAZE has been delivering the Victorian Government’s Community Power Hub (CPH) Pilot Program for Ballarat since mid 2017. During this period the BREAZE volunteers have contributed over 1,250 hours investigating the feasibility of over 40 proposals for community owned, operated or funded renewable energy projects.

The CPH Ballarat Project Control Group has completed the following projects by provision of technical and financial evaluation:
• Ballan Community House Solar Electricity and Energy Efficiency Project (Funded by Hepburn Wind Farm and Powershop)
• McCallum Disability Services Packing Facility 40kW Solar PV (Funded by Renewable Communities Fund)
• Coghills Creek Community Hall 6kW Solar PV (Funded by Renewable Communities Fund)
• Skipton Hospital Straw Heating (Funded by Renewable Communities Fund)
• Invermay Recreation Centre Solar PV

Read more: Community Power Hub Ballarat Names Flagship Project

20180221 Peter Reid breazeHere is a video presentation, all about the projects that have been identified for feasibility studies as Community Power Hub projects in the Ballarat region, including the flagship project.

You will also gain a better idea of what the local community power hub is offering. We are also looking for more great community energy projects ideas/proposals to add the investigation pipeline.

This is a video of the Smart Living Ballarat event, held in the Ballarat Library on Wednesday the 21st of February 2018.  To see the upcoming Free library events, run by Smart Living Ballarat, please see the events on their facebook page -

Thanks to our volunteer, Stephanie Patterson, for creating this video for BREAZE.

Read more for the videoWhat are our Power Hub Projects?

What is the Community Power Hub Ballarat?

The pilot Community Power Hub Ballarat is one of three across Victoria that is being established to assist the community in accessing the skills and expertise required to develop and deliver community-based renewable energy projects.

CPH Ballarat will have a group of local experts available to support community power projects in a variety of ways from preparing a business case, to establishing governance arrangements, to finding consultants or to developing social license for the project.  Ultimately it is hoped that the Community Power Hubs will become a long term self-sustaining presence.

Who is managing this project?

Ballarat Renewable Energy & Zero Emissions (BREAZE) has been appointed by Sustainability Victoria to establish a Community Power Hub in Ballarat.

The hub is managed by BREAZE on a day to day basis but governed by a roundtable of interested advisors, who will establish criteria for selecting projects and oversee the development of the selected projects.  As far as the particular projects are concerned, groups of suitably skilled people will be set up to provide assistance in their feasibility or implementation.

How is CPH Ballarat funded?

Through Sustainability Victoria, the Victorian Government has committed, over a two-year period, to develop community-owned and operated renewable energy projects in regional areas of Ballarat, Bendigo and the Latrobe Valley through a series of innovative new grants. These grants have facilitated the establishment of pilot Community Power Hubs to assist the community in accessing the skills and expertise required to develop and deliver community-based renewable energy projects.

What is the key role of the CPH Ballarat?

The role of hub is to provide support to individuals, groups or organisations that want to develop community power projects.

During the first two years of operation, the hub will identify at least four projects that will have feasibility studies completed on them and one flagship project that will be implemented.

What type of projects are being targeted?

We have a very broad definition of community energy, including the application of well-established renewable technologies delivered in new and inclusive ways. What are we looking for? – Renewable Energy Projects - Waste to energy, bioenergy/heat, wind, household solar, hydro, bulk buy schemes, partnerships with council – the sky’s the limit!

What size should the projects be?

Projects being considered are in the range of 20kW to 500kW.

Who should be interested in submitting their project for consideration by CPH Ballarat?

We want to hear from any person or organisation who has a great idea for a renewable energy project that benefits our community. No matter when over the next two years, we are very keen to hear about any community energy projects that you are considering or any interest you may have in supporting such projects via the governance or project support mechanisms.  We have a very broad definition of community energy, including the application of well-established renewable technologies delivered in new and inclusive ways, so don't hesitate to get in touch.

How can I submit my project?

You can attend one of our Open House sessions or the Ballarat Workshop.

  • Beaufort, Open House/Drop in session, Tuesday 3rd October, Beaufort Development Centre,
    4 – 7pm
  • Ballan, Open House/Drop in session, Thursday 5th October, 2017, Ballan Community House,
    4 – 7pm

  • Daylesford, Open House/Drop in session, Tuesday 10th October, Daylesford Neighbourhood Centre, 4 – 7pm
  • Ballarat, Workshop, Thursday 12th October, 2017, Provincial Hotel, 6.15 for 6.30pm – 8.30pm

OR see us at the

You can submit your project details on line at

CPH Ballarat can be contacted on:

03 5364 2909 | |
19 Dawson Street Sth, Ballarat | PO Box 1301, Bakery Hill 3354

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CPH Open house meetings workshops V2

Community Power Hub Ballarat

  • Are you worried about our energy prices and the future?
  • Do you have too much of something great – sun, wind, waste, agricultural byproducts?
  • Are you an individual, group or organisation that wants to develop and operate a community power project from a renewable energy resource or energy efficiency initiative that benefits the community?

Why not come along to one of our Open House/Drop in sessions or the Ballarat Workshop to tell us about your idea or find out more about this exciting program. We will also be taking part in the Hepburn Shire Council Carbon Free Action Workshop.

Can’t make it?  Any person or organisation who has a great idea for a community power project can submit their project idea directly to the CPH Ballarat team.

Read more: Public Information/Open House/Workshop Events

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Under the original Pilot Program, BREAZE was initially appointed by Sustainability Victoria for two years from 1 July 2017 to establish and administer the Community Power Hub Ballarat (CPH Ballarat). Funding was later extended until 30 June 2020. The purpose of the CPH pilot program was to assist renewable energy projects in our region in the same way that other hubs in Bendigo and the La Trobe valley supported projects in their regions.

In July 2021, BREAZE Inc. was again chosen by Sustainability Victoria, to lead the Grampians Community Power Hub – to identify community renewable energy projects across the 11 LGAs of the Grampians region. In partnership with its Hepburn Branch partner lead by Hepburn Energy BREAZE volunteers identified 40 + projects, which the G-CPH Project Manager, Sowmya Nagaraj, took further, in collaboration with contracted energy consultants. Delivered by Sustainability Victoria, the 2021 Community Power Hub program, which involved seven Hubs across the State,  ended in July 2022. You can download a summary of the G-CPH's achievements here.

Sustainability Victoria

The centralised website for all the Community Power Hubs provides information about all three hubs.

There is also a facebook page with CPH news and Q&A.

The CPH Ballarat Pilot program has now ended but many of the projects assessed by the Project Control Group have been implemented or are in the process of  being implemented. In late May 2020 the Victoria government's Grampians Renewable Energy Program allocated $1.1 million dollars in jobs stimulus funding to nine 'shovel ready' projects for not-for-profit organisations, eight of which came through CPH. These projects are being managed by a BREAZE Inc Project Control Group and several steering committees in collaboration with the other agencies involved

CPH Ballarat can be contacted via:  

T: 5364 2909


PO Box 1301
Bakery Hill 3354

19 Dawson Street South, Ballarat

Tarn Kruger and Ian Rossiter with BSG and Minister LilyThe Victorian Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D'Ambrosio announced in Bendigo on Wednesday 19 July 2017 that BREAZE had been funded by Sustainability Victoria to operate the Ballarat Pilot Community Power Hub.

Pilot Community Power Hubs were funded in Bendigo, La Trobe Valley and Ballarat regions to act as catalysts to develop community renewable energy projects.

BREAZE  committed to work collaboratively with the Bendigo and La Trobe Valley project teams to roll out information sessions, identify potential community renewable energy projects, investigate feasibility, identify potential partners and business cases for a number of projects.

Read more: Announcement - Ballarat Community Power Hub