Totally Renewable Yackandandah wins national Banksia Foundation environment award

WINNERS: Totally Renewable Yackandandah's Matthew Charles-Jones and Denis Ginnivan presented with their sustainable and resilient communities award by Ross Wyatt from the Banksia Foundation on Wednesday.
WINNERS: Totally Renewable Yackandandah's Matthew Charles-Jones and Denis Ginnivan presented with their sustainable and resilient communities award by Ross Wyatt from the Banksia Foundation on Wednesday.

The community project working to transform Yackandandah into a town powered by solar energy has been honoured with a national environment award.

Totally Renewable Yackandandah was presented with the Banksia Foundation’s sustainable and resilient communities award at a ceremony in Sydney on Wednesday night.

Co-chair Matthew Charles-Jones said the group was thrilled with the award.

“It’s an acknowledgement of the engagement everybody’s had in renewable energy across Yack. We very much see it as an activity of the community, rather than individuals or a small group of people,” he said.

TRY stood apart from others in its category due to a goal for the town to become 100 per cent renewable by 2022, starting with an Australia-first trial of a community solar mini-grid.

The biggest honour of the night, the Gold Banksia Sustainability Award, went to the ABC program War on Waste.

Mr Charles- Jones said TRY still had a lot of work to do, but was thankful for the award and to be recognised by an organisation full of influence.

“We’ve been reflecting on the power of people who are thinking differently about it and just getting on and doing it and, in many cases, bringing in lots of interesting partnerships - for us it’s about households and businesses,” he said.