Solar Sustainability Project

Help us unlock a new era of energy autonomy for Kingswood, and secure a more sustainable future for the College, our community, and our world.

A solar project has been launched at Kingswood College to save on the high costs of electricity and provide independence from the electricity network in addition to minimising the school’s carbon footprint.

The project will see 730 solar panels installed on campus in 2024 with the ultimate goal to reduce our reliance on the national grid by 70% and provide a stable source of electricity to the campus.

We appeal to our Kingswood community to help us make this critical project a reality by inviting you to partner with us in funding this project or by making a donation to fund a solar panel.

During the past few years Kingswood has found itself vulnerable to electricity and water shortages that have become common-place throughout South Africa.

We are very fortunate to have two generators on campus (a 250kVA and 100kVA) to host the critical services needed to ensure a campus of this size continues to run uninterrupted. This, however, comes at a huge cost. 

With the significant increase in load-shedding and diesel prices, the cost of diesel expenditure alone in 2023 was R700 000, this in addition to the high cost of electricity. The past two years alone have seen an exponential increase of operational budget being channeled into ‘keeping the lights on and water running’. 

Significant strides have been made already through interventions such as the retrofitting of LED lighting on campus, electrical load management and water storage expansion, but much still needs to be done. The scope of a ‘sustainability’ project is significant.

In line with our strategic approach towards energy sustainability, the solar project will see the installation of a 400kW Solar PV system (730 555-Watt solar panels and large-scale lithium batteries) on Kingswood’s campus in 2024. Further load management measures are being implemented to minimize the use of electricity from backup sources such as batteries and generators, as these sources of electricity are very costly.

 

These panels will not only contribute significantly to lower diesel and electricity costs, but generate clean and sustainable electricity, ensuring uninterrupted power supply during load shedding periods.

The inverter, batteries, and solar panels in the new system come with guarantees of 5, 10, and 25 years respectively, providing a secure and enduring power solution for many years to come.

As we reflect on our 130-year history this year in 2024, it is critical that we also look to the future of Kingswood as a leading school in Africa. Energy and water sustainability are a major part of our Estate and Buildings strategy (with a focus on the sustainable access-to and usage of both), but it doesn’t stop there.

Our overarching goal as a school is encapsulated in our Education for Life vision, through which we hope to give our pupils the understanding, skills and global awareness to contribute positively to a changing world. Sustainable thinking is a core element of this, and it is past due that Kingswood models this in all we do, for the sake of generations to come.

 

With this in mind our broader goals through this project are two-fold: to simply be able to continue to operate and educate our pupils, and to fulfil our role as a leading school in transitioning to a sustainable future by linking supply with renewable generation and implementing energy efficient initiatives.

Contribution Request

Help us unlock a new era of energy autonomy for Kingswood, and secure a more sustainable future for the College, our community and the world through your support of the solar project at Kingswood.

Due to the urgent nature of the project, the installation of the system is already underway, with funding having been secured through an interest-bearing loan from the Kingswood College Centenary Trust.

Donations to the Solar Sustainability Project will not only ease the interest burden of the loan (which will significantly impact Kingswood in these early years of the system), but they will also fuel re-investment into Kingswood’s most precious asset: it’s future through the Centenary Trust.

The Centenary Trust is one of Kingswood’s two endowments, and its role is to ensure the future security of our historic campus. It is the legacy of all Kingswoodians – past, present and future – and will ensure that at times such as these, Kingswood will always be able to adapt, and thrive.

Key Figures:

  • 730 Solar Panels at R3 500 per panel
  • 48 Battery Packs at  R70 000 per pack
  • 4 Inverters at R125 000 per inverter

Please note that all South African donations qualify for a Section 18A tax receipt.

Please contact our Foundation Manager, Mrs. Megan Erasmus, at m.erasmus@kingswoodcollege.com or phone +27 46 603 6641 to express your interest or click here to make a donation using our secure online giving page.

International Giving:

Donations may be made in the United States of America through the Rhodes University Trust USA or the United Kingdom using the National Philanthropic Trust to qualify for tax deductibility in these regions.

Please contact the Foundation office for further details.

Donate and stand a chance to win

Donate to the Solar Sustainability Project and stand a chance to win a 2-night stay for 8 people at the incredible Sandcastle Luxury Villa in the Eastern Cape.

How to enter:
Entry to the raffle is unlocked when you donate the value of 1 solar panel to Kingswood. Value: R3500

Terms and Conditions:

  • The raffle period will run from 01 March – 31 July 2024 .
  • The prize is inclusive of all meals prepared by a private chef, selected beverages, daily housekeeping, guide, and laundry.
  • Voucher is valid for stays until 01 December 2024.

Click here to learn more about the Sandcastle Luxury Villa, in the Eastern Cape

Direct Booking Special:
Book at Sandcastle Luxury Villa and use the code KINGSWOOD to qualify for 10% off the already discounted SADC rate.

Additionally, Kingswood will receive 10% from all bookings made with the discount code to help fund the Solar Project.