Manymak energy efficiency project : final report

Indigenous Essential Services Pty Ltd, Petra Buergelt, Elaine Maypilama, Julia McPhee, Anne Lowell, Simon Moss

Research output: Book/ReportReports


WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that the following report may contain images and quotes from deceased persons

The Manymak Energy Efficiency Project in the Northern Territory was one of 20 around Australia trialling energy efficiency approaches as part of the Australian Government’s Low Income Energy Efficiency Program (LIEEP). LIEEP was launched nationally in 2012 to trial approaches to address barriers to energy efficiency in low-income households, help improve residents’ health and comfort, and capture data to inform future policies. The project ran in the NT from May 2013 until June 2016 and worked with six remote Indigenous communities in Arnhem Land: Milingimbi, Galiwin’ku, Yirrkala, Gunyangara, Gapuwiyak and Ramingining. All six communities are on the traditional lands of the Yolŋu—the Indigenous people of east Arnhem Land. A five-member consortium led by Indigenous Essential Services, a subsidiary of the Northern Territory’s Power and Water Corporation, delivered the Manymak Energy Efficiency Project. The other consortium members are the Centre for Appropriate Technology, Charles Darwin University, the NT Department of Housing and the East Arnhem Regional Council. The project budget was $12.5 million, with the Australian Government contributing $9.4 million and the consortium providing $3.1 million of in-kind support. The project’s objectives were to: • define the unique barriers remote Indigenous communities face around household energy efficiency • form active partnerships with 500 remote Indigenous households • encourage participation from up to 80 per cent of households in each location • design and trial technology that is culturally appropriate and suitable for harsh climates • design an incentive scheme to encourage households to reduce their energy consumption • rigorously evaluate the project and develop a replicable energy efficiency engagement model. The project’s four main components were: • energy efficiency and water conservation education delivered to residents at their houses by Yolŋu ‘ambassadors’ • energy efficiency retrofits and upgrades in homes, such as stove timers, ceiling insulation, hot water system upgrades and new light globes • installation of the innovative BEEBox, a device that measures and displays the household’s daily energy use • data collection and evaluation. Buy-in and participation from local Indigenous people was central to the project’s design and its later success. The project was framed by Yolŋu cultural protocols, and Yolŋu ‘ambassadors’ were recruited to help the project team engage with and educate residents in local language and in ways that were culturally appropriate, respectful and productive.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherCommonwealth Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.
Number of pages270
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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