Ucunivatu Primary has 49 students taught by 4 teachers in classes from K to 8. The school is on Fiji's second largest island, Vanua Levu, but has no road access with supplies and transport by small boats either from Bucca Bay to the East or across the Somosomo straight to Taveuni (each boat trip to Taveuni costs the school approximately FJD100 in fuel).The school had a 15 year old, small solar system that had failed a long time ago. Their old generator had also failed and at the time of solar installation the school had no power and they were saving to buy a new diesel generator. The solar system we installed had a relatively small battery bank, so in 2023 that was replaced with a new Simplphi Lithium battery set.
Fiji Water Foundation
Ucunivatu Primary School
Annual school fuel saving (litres) (1)
Annual fuel saving 4 teachers' homes getting solar (litres) (2)
Annual cartage saving (litres) (3)
Total annual fuel saving (litres) (4)
Fuel saving over 30 years (litres)
Annual CO2 saving (kgs)
CO2 saving over 30 years (kgs)
Annual AUD saving (8)
Annual USD saving
Annual FJD saving
30 yrs AUD saving
30 yrs USD saving
30 yrs FJD saving
Total of All It's Time Solar Schools
Total annual school fuel saving (litres)
Total annual fuel saving 91 teachers' homes getting solar (litres)
Total annual cartage saving (litres)
Total annual fuel saving (litres) (4)
Total fuel saving over 30 years (litres)
Total annual CO2 saving (kgs)
Total CO2 saving over 30 years (kgs)
Total annual AUD saving (8)
Total annual USD saving
Total annual FJD saving
Total 30 yrs AUD saving
Total 30 yrs USD saving
Total 30 yrs FJD saving
Fuel cost in the islands in AUD/litre (5)
Fuel cartage consideration % (3)
Annual fuel consumption per teacher's home wired (litres) (2)
Annual generator maintenance consideration AUD (6)
CO2 produced per litre of fuel burned (kgs) (7)
AUD to USD conversion rate used
AUD to FJD conversion rate used
(1) This is the annual fuel consumption based on reporting from the school at the time of school survey and affirmed at the time of installation. It refers to direct fuel use by the school, not including teachers' homes.
(2) The fuel consumption of teachers' homes varies considerable between homes and over time. Their sources of energy varies from their own small generators to shared generators, still some use kerosene for lighting and some small solar (often failing) for lights and charging. Recently on Beqa Island two of the 7 households at one school were each using 10 litres of fuel per week and some were using very little. So, we have chosen the conservative underestimate of each household saving of 2 litres per week (approx. 5 kgs of CO2).
(3) Most schools have a cost to get fuel to the school - usually small boats and car/truck on the mainland. The costs vary from small amounts to some schools where the cartage cost is almost the same as the cost of the fuel itself. The cartage consideration (dollar and carbon cost) is a percentage of the total fuel consumption, because it varies widely from school to school we have chosen quite a conservative estimate.
(4) Includes cartage and teachers' home consumption estimate that therefore contribute to the total CO2 saving. But we do not include the teachers home in the financial saving - rather we just refer to the savings from the school generator.
(5) This is the current published diesel price in Fiji presented in AUD. Often the islands pay a higher price, but that is not factored in, so generally the price will be a small under estimation.
(6) Generators often require repairs and eventually replacement. That cost varies significantly from school to school, so a conservative value is applied to represent this component of cost/saving for all schools. It is not possible to calculate that accurately for every school, hence the estimate across all.
(7) Burning diesel produces CO2 at a rate of 2.68 kgs/litre, whereas petrol produces it at a rate of 2.31 kgs/litre. We have chosen 2.55 as the approximate for our calculations because there is more diesel used than petrol in the school generators.
(8) The fuel savings in the teachers' homes are not included in the calculation of financial savings for the school. Although teachers are asked to make a small contribution each term (FJD70) for their now 24-hour power and this goes to the school to buy more education resources.
Number of panels
Number of batteries
General electrical works
The school wiring was repaired and a 150m circuit was laid to the teachers' homes and they were wired with new LED lighting and power points.4 amp breakers are installed into the teachers' homes - this limits appliances to less than 1000 watts (so no electric cook tops etc., but capacity to use modest sized electrical appliances). That power limiting strategy means effective use of a reasonably sized school solar system and all in the community are very happy to have this level of 24-hour power supply.
General electric works constractor
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