Parliament House switches on Sunergise solar

Aotearoa-New Zealand’s Government is embracing green energy with 561 solar panels installed by Sunergise and switched on in January 2023 to power Parliament House.

The solar installation is part of a wider sustainability project being conducted by Parliamentary Services.

Parliamentary Service Chief Executive Rafael Gonzalez-Montero says the Parliament House solar installation is vital as New Zealand works toward a net carbon-zero future.

“Making sustainable choices is a priority for us, and this is one way we can work towards our vision of having an environmentally sustainable New Zealand Parliament.”

“These solar panels will reduce the amount of fossil fuels Parliament relies on, which means we can decrease our carbon footprint and impact on the environment.”

Mr Gonzalez-Montero says that screens displaying the panels’ output in real-time have been installed in the Beehive reception.

He adds that placing the panels on the century-old, Category 1 heritage building brought additional challenges for the installers from Sunergise. The array had to meet specific design requirements.


"These solar panels will reduce the amount of fossil fuels Parliament relies on, which means we can decrease our carbon footprint and impact on the environment."


Mr Gonzalez-Montero says the Parliamentary Service Buildings Team worked very closely with Wellington City Council, Heritage New Zealand, and their own architects on the resource consent application for the solar panels.

Sunergise Installation Business Manager James Hogg, who was part of the team on the roof of Parliament House installing the panels, says they worked closely with architects and heritage experts to avoid a visual impact. As a result the solar panels are low-reflective and black-edged and the design ensured the panels align with the existing building profile.

James adds, the case for switching to solar is compelling. “It is not just about saving money – it’s much more. We all must make the changes, however small they may seem. As a collective, we can have a positive impact.”


Sunergise wins at SEANZ Industry Awards

The SEANZ Industry Awards recognise outstanding solar energy projects and businesses within the nation.

This year’s event was the best-attended ever and reflected the increased numbers across the two day programme which stands as the largest solar energy summit in New Zealand to date. This year’s summit included a dedicated utility solar segment in addition to its traditional focus on commercial, industrial, and residential aspects of solar energy.

The Revolve Energy Award for Best Grid-Connected PV Solar System award underscores the Sunergise teams’ experience and dedication to providing solar implementations to the highest standards.

The 204 kilowatt Grid Connect Solar Energy System was supplied and installed at Parliament House to reduce load on the main switchboard, lower carbon emissions, and promote renewable energy. The project encompassed seamless integration with the existing building management system and backup generators, security protocol adherence, and harmonisation with Parliament House’s heritage mandates.


"The project was a significant undertaking with a host of complexities. We knew its potential to send a powerful message about sustainable energy..."


The selection of equipment, such as REC TwinPeak Black solar panels and SMA Solar Inverters, was carefully considered to blend with the heritage building’s aesthetics and uphold ethical sourcing standards. The installation featured bespoke-designed timber plinths and weather-tight membranes. Additionally, the solar system design integrated with backup generators, vital for Parliament’s continuity during grid outages.

The system was installed without disruption to Parliament House’s daily operations. Noise levels were closely monitored to ensure minimal disturbance, and the highest security standards were upheld on-site.

To communicate the benefits of solar to the public, screens have been installed in the Beehive’s reception area to provide real-time displays of the solar panels’ electricity generation.

Accepting the award, James Hogg, Installation Business Manager at Sunergise, said, “The project was a significant undertaking with a host of complexities. We knew its potential to send a powerful message about sustainable energy. Winning the award for the Parliament House implementation is something we can all celebrate for the future of solar in New Zealand.”


PMG Funds partners with Sunergise New Zealand to reduce the economic and environmental cost of powering business success

Leading New Zealand property funds manager, PMG Funds, has signed a partnership agreement with award-winning solar provider Sunergise New Zealand to improve the operational cost and energy efficiency of buildings within its five commercial property funds.

Under the agreement, Sunergise will provide solar power solutions for PMG-managed properties, including design, installation, and ongoing maintenance at no cost to PMG, its tenants or investors. The project’s initial phase will see solar panels installed on several properties in the North Island, with plans to expand to additional properties in the South Island over time.


“Our partnership with PMG is part of a broader trend towards sustainability and renewable energy in New Zealand. As the country moves towards its reduced carbon targets, initiatives like this will be essential in achieving those goals.”


PMG Funds’ Chief Executive, Scott McKenzie, says the partnership announcement – which follows four PMG-managed properties achieving 4.5+Star NABERSNZ energy ratings – is an important next step in its ongoing sustainability strategy; and a win-win solution that responds to the evolving expectations of both its tenants and its investors.

“The partnership demonstrates how we can simultaneously deliver on our promise to be partner of choice for both our tenants and investors. For our tenants, the partnership gives them access to cheaper and cleaner power; while for our investors, it means no capital outlay is required from the funds they are invested in to install the green energy sources today’s tenants are demanding.”

Sunergise New Zealand will install grid-connected solar to enable PMG-managed properties to generate clean energy during peak daylight hours. The solar power systems will help to reduce electricity costs for PMG tenants, while also providing a more sustainable and environmentally-friendly source of energy.

Paul Makumbe, CEO of Sunergise New Zealand, says he’s thrilled to partner with PMG Funds and help demonstrate a commitment to making New Zealand a better place.

“Our award-winning solar power solutions will enable PMG-managed properties to generate clean energy and provide facilities that today’s tenants expect. We look forward to working with PMG Funds to expand the use of solar power across their property portfolio.”

“Our partnership with PMG is part of a broader trend towards sustainability and renewable energy in New Zealand. As the country moves towards its reduced carbon targets, initiatives like this will be essential in achieving those goals.”


Sunergise shines at Sustainable Energy Awards

Sunergise WINS at SEANZ Fronius New Zealand Sustainable Energy Industry Awards 2022

Over 550 attended this year’s SEANZ (Sustainable Energy Association NZ) 2022 Conference and Awards. The biggest and best yet, SEANZ 2022 featured a two day programme that filled Auckland’s Grand Millennium Hotel on August 25 – 26, encompassing new programmes, innovative case studies and collaboration to drive innovation in the industry.

The highlight of the event was the 2022 SEANZ Fronius Energy Awards, announced at the industry dinner, this year’s theme of innovation recognising a range of innovative projects and technologies in the sustainable energy space.

Best Grid Connected Renewable System, Winner: Sunergise for Kings Plant Barn

Kings Plant Barn wanted their new building to fully incorporate solar panels. Sunergise worked closely with Cheshire architects during the design phase to provide a visually appealing solar exoskeleton that meets all building and electrical code requirements.

This revolutionary bespoke implementation integrated the solar panels into the design to give a sleek profile, requiring design solutions that were the first of their kind in New Zealand. Select panels were placed purely for aesthetic reasons and mixed energy production with design considerations with a balanced, elegant approach. Door and window widths were based on individual panel widths.

Sunergise co founder Lachlan McPherson was part of the team accepting the award on the night and said ‘The implementation is a testament to the vision shared by Kings Plant Barn, Cheshire Architects and the Sunergise engineering and install team. Displaying exceptional craftsmanship, it represents a new milestone for the solar industry in New Zealand, where sustainable solar is integrated for its aesthetic appeal as well as its utility


‘The implementation is a testament to the vision shared by Kings Plant Barn, Cheshire Architects and the Sunergise engineering and install team.'


Best Large Renewable Energy Business, Runner-up: Sunergise

Sunergise was also awarded Runner Up for Best Large Business 2022. The category recognises business excellence within the renewable energy market segment. It celebrates businesses that have developed and grown whilst making a positive contribution to society, the industry and all stakeholders – customers, employees, and shareholders. This category recognises the quality of the business and what it delivers.

SEANZ Chairman Brendan Winitana says “every year the SEANZ awards attracts a multitude of submissions, what challenges SEANZ is selecting category winners. The categories are designed to enable greater representation across the industry with distributed energy resources and in 2022 the range in each category is astounding in terms of quality and outcomes. What it does prove is the ongoing commitment of those in the SEANZ group to lift the game, provide innovative solutions to challenges and maintain a benchmark standard set several years back by previous winners.”


Solar Kits Presented to Tongan Acting PM to Support Recovery

Acting Prime Minister of Tonga Hon. Poasi Tei accepted the humanitarian support of 504 solar lighting and phone charging kits, presented by Sunergise and Clay Energy representative Nikolasi Fonua in the Tongan capital Nukuʻalofa.

With 85% of the country’s population of 105,000 people affected by the 2022 Hunga Tonga–Hunga Ha’apai eruption and tsunami, Tonga faces a long road to recovery. The twin natural disasters resulted from what was probably the largest volcanic eruption in the  21st century with tsunami waves up to 15 m (49 ft) high.


"“As solar providers in the region we, and our equipment partners at Niwa, show solidarity with the Kingdom of Tonga, which has been hit particularly hard following the eruption."


Valued at over 50 NZD each, The 1.5W NIWA Starlight One portable solar lighting and phone-charging kits each provide up to 45 hours of run time and will be distributed to households that remain vulnerable by Tonga’s Department of Energy in coordination with aid teams.

“The shockwaves from the disaster have been felt right around the Pacific,” says Sunergise director Ajay Raniga. “As solar providers in the region we, and our equipment partners at Niwa, show solidarity with the Kingdom of Tonga, which has been hit particularly hard following the eruption. They are doing a great deal to respond under challenging circumstances and these solar lighting and phone charging kits will assist to build resilience.”

Sunergise and Clay Energy have over 18MW of solar power implementations in the Pacific region.