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Thursday , 6 June 2024

Preparing Communities to Install Neighbourhood Batteries for Cheaper Energy

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The Victorian Government has delivered a new digital tool to help community and organisations find out if they are ready to install a neighbourhood battery – supporting energy reliability and delivering cheaper energy bills.

Minister for Energy and Resources Lily D’Ambrosio announced today that the 100 Neighbourhood Batteries Program will deliver more batteries to Victorian communities this year – with two new tools making the applications easier than ever. 

“We’ve made Victoria the home of batteries. From the Victorian Big Battery, the Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub through to the 100 Neighbourhood Batteries Program, we’re strengthening our energy reliability, driving down electricity prices, and leading the transition to renewables,” Minister D’Ambrosio said.

Larger than a household battery but smaller than grid-scale batteries, neighbourhood batteries return power into the hands of local communities – soaking up cheap renewable energy when it is plentiful and dispatching it when it is needed most. 

They ensure local households and businesses get the most out of their solar by ensuring excess power is stored for when it is needed – helping to drive down power bills and improve reliability.

The 100 Neighbourhood Batteries Program is open to councils, community groups, businesses, developers and not-for-profits, who can determine through the new Project Readiness Assessment Tool whether a neighbourhood battery is the right fit for their local community and whether they are ready to apply. 

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“With the new project readiness tool and one-on-one support for potential applicants, we’re supporting more community organisations to get involved in the 100 Neighbourhood Batteries Program,” Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Action Sheena Watt said.

As applications for the next round open in August, the new tool shows will help groups prepare to apply for funding. One-on-one advice and support from our team of neighbourhood battery experts is also available.

From June 2024, organisations that want to put together a business case and submit an application for funding will be able to use the Neighbourhood Battery Business Case Tool. This will help more community organisations build the business case for their project and develop a stronger application for Government funding.

The 100 Neighbourhood Battery Program builds on the successes of the $10.92 million Neighbourhood Battery Initiative, which delivered batteries in places like Tarneit and Fitzroy North. 

With 25 batteries already funded, projects delivered by the Victorian Government’s $42 million 100 Neighbourhood Batteries Program will improve local energy network reliability and remove constraints – helping to reduce the incidence of power outages and allowing for more households to take up rooftop solar.

For more information, visit energy.vic.gov.au/grants/neighbourhood-batteries.

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