The Marlinja Community Solar Project is a community-led initiative to improve household and community-wide energy security for residents of the Marlinja outstation.
Marlinja, in the Northern Territory’s Barkly Tablelands, is home to 60 people. Like many similar communities, residents experience extreme energy insecurity, with high household power costs and regular periods where electricity is disconnected. With wet season temperatures in the mid-40s and overcrowded, poorly designed housing, securing reliable and affordable energy for essential needs is a significant problem for many households.
Phase 1 of this project saw the connection of a solar array on the Community Centre, reducing power bills. Residents were involved in project planning, installation of rooftop solar panels, and received training in electrical technology and carpentry skills. Marlinja school students also took part in a Solar Schools Day to learn more about how solar power works for the community.
Phase 2 is now underway, with plans to install a 100kW solar array, inverters and home battery systems, providing enough power for all 13 community households.