Over four years, both governments will contribute $87.5 million each to support energy-saving improvements across more than 24,000 properties throughout the state. This is particularly important for social housing properties, which are often known for their lack of energy efficiency.
By upgrading these homes from a 1-star to a 3-star energy rating, energy consumption can be reduced by an impressive 30 percent, resulting in significantly lower power bills. The funding will be used to implement various upgrades, such as heat-pump hot water systems, ceiling fans, reverse-cycle air conditioners, solar systems, insulation, and draught-proofing.
Priority will be given to older properties that are less energy efficient, as well as those located in areas with extreme heat and cold conditions. Additionally, the Albanese government has set aside $30 million specifically to assist low-income households and apartment residents in financing rooftop solar installations or gaining access to a portion of a solar garden community energy plot.
This new Solar Banks program is anticipated to benefit around 10,000 households, potentially reducing their power bills by up to $600 annually. It enables households to purchase a share of a medium-scale solar farm, ensuring they have access to clean and affordable energy.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese expressed the government's commitment to providing clean and affordable energy to all Australians. He emphasized the importance of energy savings, stating that it translates to saving money without contributing to inflation.
Premier Chris Minns highlighted the significance of addressing the cost of living, making it a top priority for NSW. Minns expressed pride in partnering with the Albanese government to deliver cheaper and cleaner energy to some of the least energy-efficient houses in the country.
Energy Minister Chris Bowen emphasized how Labor is helping those who have been left out of energy efficiency and renewables to benefit from the clean energy transformation. He mentioned the critical upgrades in social housing properties and the strong solar energy incentives for apartment block residents in NSW, which will result in cleaner and cheaper energy for more Australians.
Labor has also revealed plans to invest an additional $1 million in community renewable energy projects on the far south coast, further aligning with their election commitment.
Overall, this joint initiative by the Federal and NSW State Governments promises to bring about significant positive change by providing funding for energy-saving upgrades and expanding access to solar power. It will not only help households save on their energy bills but also contribute to a cleaner and more sustainable environment.