Member for Ballarat Catherine King MP announced today that Hepburn Shire will receive a community battery, helping lower household electricity bills, reduce emissions and deliver reliable renewable energy for local residents.
Hepburn Energy, Australia’s first community-owned wind farm will receive $500,000 in the first round of grant funding from the Albanese Government to install a community battery co-located at the wind farm at Leonards Hill.
The battery will support Hepburn Shire with affordable energy by storing renewable energy generated during the day for distribution in the evening when energy is more expensive.
Funding for Stage 1 of the Hepburn Energy Community Battery is part of the government’s Community Batteries program, investing $200 million to install 400 community batteries across the country.
Community batteries also enable households without solar panels to reap the benefits of renewable energy, while reducing emissions and easing pressure on the grid by absorbing excess solar generated electricity.
Community Batteries are just one of the steps the Albanese Government is taking to drive down household and business energy costs and make homes and businesses cheaper to run.
The Government’s Energy Price Relief Plan capped skyrocketing coal and gas prices, reducing wholesale electricity prices by 50% since October, and more than five million households and one million small businesses will be eligible for Energy Price Relief Rebates from July 1 relief the Liberals and Nationals voted against.
As part of the Government’s plan to ease the cost of living without adding to inflation, the 2023/24 Budget delivers more than $1.6 billion for energy saving upgrades for homes, businesses and social housing. This investment will help people with older homes and appliances that don’t meet modern energy standards to upgrade and keep money from leaking out the door.
With Hepburn Energy given the green light, work will now begin to plan the construction of the battery in 2024 and engage with the local community. Hepburn Energy received a planning permit for a co-located battery at the wind farm in late 2022.
The remaining 342 community batteries are being delivered through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) now, with expressions of interest open until 30 June 2023.
For more information on the Community Batteries Program visit the following website https://www.dcceew.gov.au/energy/renewable/community-batteries
Quotes attributable to Member for Ballarat Catherine King
“Around 1 in 3 Australian households have solar panels on their roofs, making us a global leader, but far fewer have batteries to store their energy for later use. The Community Batteries program is about unlocking storage and providing cleaner, cheaper energy for families.”
“Renewable energy is the cheapest form of energy and we’re ensuring that people in the Hepburn Shire can have access to it. It means residents can take advantage of the abundant solar energy and save on power bills, it just makes sense.”
Quotes attributable to General Manager of Hepburn Energy Taryn Lane
“On top of its climate benefit, the battery will be 100% owned and operated by the co-operative and help reduce electricity bills for the community and members signed up to the Hepburn Energy electricity offer.”
Media contact: Kallista Kaval | 0474 048 152 | email@example.com