13. Kulchajam

Solar panels on Kulchajam roof

Project 13: Kulchajam, NSW

Kulchajam was a much-loved non-profit arts and cultural organisation in the Byron Bay Arts Industrial Estate. Kulchajam integrated social enterprise principles, sustainability, cultural exchange, and artistic excellence.

Project story…

CORENA provided a $6,000 loan in mid-2016 for their 6.24kW of solar PV. This would normally have cost a lot more but the local installer provided a very generous discount.

Initial loan repayments were a bit erratic, apparently due to financial difficulties, and Kulchajam ended up disbanding. Since they were renting their premises and had no money to fulfil our loan agreement, we wondered if this might be our first and only ‘bad debt’. But all’s well that ends well…thanks to the owner of the building.

After a ‘comedy of errors’ involving defunct email addresses, with wrong account details causing bouncing recurring payments that the owner did not notice were bouncing (and we did not know they were bouncing either of course), we received payment of the full outstanding amount in April 2020.

Despite a rocky repayment trajectory, the $6,000 we lent to Kulchajam had grown via our revolving fund to achieve $12,653 worth of climate goodness by mid 2020, and had avoided 45MWh of grid electricity.

See what has been achieved via the CORENA loan to Kulchajam so far

* The MWh figure is the amount of grid electricity avoided by solar electricity generation and energy efficiency measures. The resultant reductions in carbon emissions can be visualised as an equivalent number of average households switching from grid electricity to 100% renewable electricity, noting that the subsequent projects have been avoiding grid electricity for less time than the original project.

This project has been fully funded- Thank you!

Progress bar showing fully funded via $3,535 in new donations and $2,465 in loan repayments

Honour roll

Thanks to all the people who have donated to this project.

Status: Funded project – loan fully repaid
Loan amount: $6,000
Loan repayments: $450/quarter

Kulchajam Loan repayments table - loan fully repaid

Work details

6.24kW Solar PV
24 x 260W Risen panels
SMA 5000TL single phase -21 inverter
Cost: $6,000 (after big discount by local installer)
Expected savings: $1,940/year, 9,567kWh/year

Reduction in carbon emissions/yr: Equivalent to 1.72 average households average households using renewable electricity instead of grid electricity