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High-end green the goal as Turners opt for solar, hydrogen at resorts

Business

The Turner family is making the switch to hydrogen and solar to power with a goal of net zero emissions at its Spicers resort and moving the high-end business into the green category.

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Spicers has switched on its own solar array at its Hidden Vale resort generating up 100 kilowatts of energy and delivering about a third of the business’s needs.

Owned by the Turner family of Flight Centre fame, the resorts have been performing strongly through the pandemic and business and the Turner Family Foundation have released an environmental sustainability master plan, which they claim will “radically reduce waste, energy emissions and water use over the next decade”.

Its goals include zero net emissions from energy by 2030, the reduction of water usage by 25 per cent by 2025 and the end of of single-use plastics and net waste to landfill by 2025.

Spicers Peak Lodge, north east of Warwick, has just completed an energy reduction upgrade and retrofit and will also soon have its own solar array.

Its Balfour Hotel, in New Farm, sports a rooftop garden, green waste recycling and a bee hive.

The Spicers business also has a $2m renewable energy project funded by the State Government to replace diesel powered generators at five off-grid Scenic Rim Trail properties, with renewable hydrogen storage by the end of June 2022.

The group now has nine retreats and eight restaurants across Queensland and New South Wales, with a further five properties in their eco-tourism venture, Spicers Scenic Rim Trail.

Founder and joint head of the Turner Family Foundation Jude Turner said protecting and enhancing the environment, particularly in south east Queensland was a passion.

“We hope our projects will not only help to preserve our environment for future generations but also inspire other individuals and businesses to do the same.”

Sustainability manager John Ahern said the foundation had set itself big goals.

“With our Sustainable Future Task Force targeting infrastructure, changes such as renewable power, it’s great to see the whole team at Spicers Retreats and the Turner Family Foundation getting behind the initiatives and doing their part,” he said.

The Retreats will also act as incubation and innovation hubs where new technologies for lighting, air conditioning and water monitoring can be trialled.

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