Matthew Charles-Jones

Founder of Totally Renewable Yackandandah

VICNomineeLocal Hero2021

After organising a community energy forum in 2014 in his hometown of Yackandandah, Matthew Charles-Jones initiated the community group Totally Renewable Yackandandah (TRY).

With enthusiasm and commitment, Matthew brought together passionate townspeople to strive for 100 per cent renewable energy by the year 2022. Thanks to the group’s determination and Matthew’s leadership, the goal is well within sight.

TRY takes a community approach to energy innovation, with a focus on efficiency, local generation and storage. TRY has installed solar systems on all the town’s major public and private institutional buildings – from the CFA fire station and hospital, to the supermarket and service station. Yackandandah now has among the highest density of rooftop solar in Australia.

With the help of Mondo, a subsidiary of AusNet Services, the town has installed three micro grids and a broader mini grid to advance clean, local and interdependent power.

Matthew regularly shares TRY’s journey with other communities, inspiring them to also reach for a 100 per cent renewable energy.