Environment and Social Responsibility Policies

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Acknowledgement of Country:

Sunergy acknowledges and extends our appreciation for the Dja Dja Wurrung People, the Traditional Owners of the land we operate on. 

We pay our respects to leaders and Elders past, present and future, for they hold the memories, traditions, culture and hopes of all Dja Dja Wurrung Peoples.

We express our gratitude for sharing this land, our sorrow for the personal, spiritual and cultural costs of that sharing, and our hope that we may walk forward together in harmony and in the spirit of healing.

Support our local community:

The Sunergy community fund has been operating since 2015.  We set aside a minimum of five per cent of accounting profit to support charities and not-for-profits.  Examples of where we have provided support include:

  • Donated solar systems to The Old Church on the Hill, Discovery and Quarry Hill Primary School
  • Sponsor of the Bendigo Cycling Classic for the past three years and ongoing.  This event has raised almost $200k, which is split equally between the Otis Foundation and Bendigo Health
  • Substantial discounts for off-grid systems for Five Freedoms Kangaroo Rescue in Woodend and families who are struggling financially
  • Sunergy actively supports MMM's Blanket Bendigo initiative by buying blankets to donate and being a designated drop-off point.
  • Monthly contribution to Empowered by Light
  • Staff have volunteered their time for the Bendigo Fun Run and O'Keefe Challenge.

Modern slavery and child labour:

  • Sunergy has a non-negotiable anti-modern slavery/child labour position.
  • Unfortunately, there is a lack of fidelity in terms of verifiable information on modern slavery, therefore, we rely on (i) The Silicon Valley Toxic Coalition Solar Scorecard as our primary reference; (ii) the thoroughness (and believability) of manufacturer anti-slavery policies; (iii) doing web searches of the following key phrase {manufacturer-name} and modern slavery; (iv) reviewing which companies are banned from importing product into the USA under that country's slavery policies.
  • Some may argue that low scorers on the currently available Solicon Valley Toxics Coalition "may" have cleaned up their supply chains.  We hold that using forced labour in 2018/19 but claiming not to now, does not represent an acceptable moral reformation.
  • We have lobbied the CER, CEC and Solar Victoria to formulate an anti-slavery framework for the solar industry.
  • There is a noted tendency to regard this issue as in the "too hard basket"; we believe it is too important to ignore.

Buy local:

  • We give strong preference to local businesses in our supply chain.  Most of our solar supply chain for panels, inverters, rail, cable and consumables are local electrical wholesalers (AWM, Lawrence & Hanson and Middys).
  • Our accounting, legal and media services providers are all local

HR Policies:

  • We have documented policies around discrimination, bullying and harassment.
  • We promote equal opportunity, including disability support.

Reduce, Re-use and Recycle:

  • We separate installation waste streams and arrange for them to be recycled.  For example, cardboard, plastics, aluminium rail and cable.
  • We actively prefer products that are known to be reliable, which keeps them out of waste in the first place.
  • We actively prefer products that are known to be reliable (keep it out of waste).and products that are packaged in cardboard rather than plastic/polystyrene (e.g. Fronius inverters)
  • Failed inverters, batteries and circuit cards etc, go to formal eWaste centres (not landfill).
  • When we replace solar arrays, we test the removed panels and those that remain functional are offered for sale or donation to deserving cases.
  • Failed panels are recycled via Solar Recovery Corporation.  Solar Recovery Corporation has recently advised that Sunergy is their only solar installation customer in Bendigo.   Some solar companies take panels to the Eaglehawk Recycling Centre; we are advised by Eaglehawk staff that most end up in landfill with only the frames and cables being recycled.
  • Sunergy references the current Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition Solar Scorecard when choosing products and manufacturers.  Note:  An updated scorecard is scheduled for release in June 2023.  The scorecard assesses the human rights and environmental CSR aspects of solar manufacturers.