|BRIGHT: St Michael secondary school students admiring the newly installed solar panels|
St. Michael secondary school here in Penampang is the first school in East Malaysia to be fitted with a PV system.
The installation of a 5.4kWh rooftop photovoltaic (PV) system at the school was completed by German renewable energy systems firm Solarsysteme Sachsen GmbH. Approximately 6,800 kWh of solar energy will be generated per year and helps to reduce the school’s utility costs. The system includes a back-up system: the energy stored in the battery can be used during a power blackout.
The purpose of implementing this project is to further educate the students on PV’s important role in improving living conditions around the world, as well as displacing the use of fossil fuels to generate electricity.
The project was initiated in October last year is locally known as the “Solar Roofs Project Malaysia”. St. Michael Secondary School was not only chosen based on its numerous involvement in environmental projects throughout the years, but the school’s positive spirit and enthusiasm in promoting renewable energy too have been taken into consideration. According to the board of governors chairman Donald Malingan, environmental education in the school helps to create and increase the environment awareness of preserving Mother Nature amongst its students, teachers, parents and the community. From his observation, Malingan noted that the students have made it a habit to recycle, to turn off the nonessential lights and fans and reduce the water consumption.