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Tram in Melbourne
Photograph: Graham Denholm

Melbourne’s tram network is now offset entirely by solar power

Nicola Dowse
Written by
Nicola Dowse

Catching a tram in Melbourne just became more sustainable thanks to a new solar farm. The Numurkah Solar Farm was officially opened on Friday, July 19 as part of the state government's solar trams initiative. 

The new plant will generate 255,000 megawatts of clean energy annually. Combined with the Bannerton Solar Park near Robinvale, the Numurkah Solar Farm produces enough renewable energy to offset Melbourne’s entire tram network. That’s more than 400 trams that are now carbon neutral. 

The carbon emission reduction generated by the new solar farm is also roughly equivalent to planting 390,000 trees or taking 75,000 cars off the road (plus every time you travel by tram instead of driving you’re taking another car off the road). 

The Andrews state government wants Victoria to be generating 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030 (which coincides with the 2018 UN report that warned we have 12 years to prevent catastrophic climate change). The City of Melbourne recently declared a climate emergency, joining the City of Sydney and 800 councils worldwide.

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