The Dja Dja Wurrung Renewable Energy Strategy Nyauwi Mutjeka was launched today in a ceremony at the Bendigo Tennis Centre, with DJAARA (the Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation), and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.
Noting the abundance of sun on Dja Dja Wurrung Country, Dja Dja Wurrung Group CEO Rodney Carter said the strategy is about healing People, healing Country and healing climate.
“Long after we have gone, the sun will still shine upon our children, and they will build upon and improve their own energy needs from the foundations we lay,” Rodney said.
“Our Strategy sets out a pathway towards a modern energy future cognisant of our ancient knowledge and philosophy. The transition to renewable energy is a means of healing Country in a contemporary context.
“You’ll see contributions from children in our Strategy, in recognition of our duty of care towards future generations.”
Minister for Energy, Solar Homes, Environment and Climate Action Lily D’Ambrosio congratulated DJAARA on launching Nyauwi Mutjeka.
“This is an historic renewable energy strategy and solar-battery project, set to slash energy bills and emissions while advancing self-determination and economic independence,” Minister D’Ambrosio said.
“We are proud to have helped fund DJAARA’s inaugural solar-battery project and are grateful for their engagement with Victoria’s Traditional Owner Renewable Energy Program.”
DJAARA has gained the support of industry partners who share the vision for healing People, healing Country and healing climate through the transition to renewable energy systems.
“We welcome investment in renewable energy generation on Djandak (Country) and look forward to leading and collaborating with partners on renewable energy projects,” Rodney said.
“Energy justice for Djaara and all First Nations People underpins our approach to renewable energy, as this is critical for healing.
“We want to work with companies and government to ensure renewable energy developments on Djandak benefit our People and avoid negatively impacting Country, Native Title, Cultural Heritage, land rights and Dja Dja Wurrung’s Recognition and Settlement Agreement with the State of Victoria.
“DJAARA expects to be engaged from the beginning and throughout projects on Djandak. Through genuine partnerships, we can heal People, Country, and our climate,” Rodney said.
In line with the Corporation’s commitment to renewable energy, DJAARA has installed a substantial solar generation and storage system at its Forest Street offices.
The system and the development of the Dja Dja Wurrung Renewable Energy Strategy were funded through the Victorian Government’s Traditional Owner Renewable Energy Program (TOREP).
This program made $100,000 available for each Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) to support Traditional Owner Corporations in designing and implementing their plans and aspirations in renewable energy. To date, 9 RAPs have received funding for a range of renewable energy community projects to be delivered by June 2023.
Partners supporting the Dja Dja Wurrung Renewable Energy Strategy: RACV Solar, the City of Greater Bendigo, Campaspe Shire Council and the City of Ballarat, Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance, First Nations Clean Energy Network, C4CE, Bendigo Sustainability Group, Macedon Ranges Sustainability Group, Renewable Newstead, BREAZE, and Hepburn Energy.