Australian Green Party pledges grants, loans to support renewable energy

In the face of rival pledges to support fossil-fuel projects, Australia’s Green Party has announced a massive plan to spur renewable energy, such as solar and batteries, by providing grants and loans, as well as its earlier promise to create a not-for-profit, 100% community-owned electricity retailer.

The party’s leader, Adam Bandt, who is running against a coalition led by incumbent Prime Minister Scott Morrison, announced that the party’s plan to support renewable energy will include grants for homeowners and business owners between $10,000 and $25,000, and loans of up to $100,000.

The grants and loans are intended to support a shift from gas boilers, water heaters and stoves to electric alternatives and clean energy sources, according to a report by Australia’s Renew Economy website.

green party plan

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Renewable energy projects in Australia

The Australian Greens’ plan aims to provide grants of up to $10,000 to families, about $25,000 to small businesses, as well as low-interest loans of between $20,000 and $100,000.

Grants, according to the plan, are limited to 20% of the total cost of replacement projects, but can be increased up to 50% for the family, if it agrees to disconnect from the entire gas network within 6 months.

In addition to grants and loans to support the transition from gas-to-electric alternatives, the new Green Party plan includes subsidies for homes and businesses to purchase battery storage systems, up to $5,000 for households and $10,000 for small businesses.

The maximum grant amount is 50% of the total cost of installation, and other low-interest loans are up to $10,000 for families, and up to $50,000 for small businesses.

The transition to renewable energy

“The party’s plan will help people get batteries for their homes, switch from gas to renewables, lower energy bills and reduce pollution,” said Bandt, who made the announcement along with the Queensland Smart Energy and Solar Installers Council.

“The Sunshine State is a paradise for renewable energy, but not everyone can afford batteries to get the most out of solar panels,” he added. “The Greens will make sure that Queenslanders get a lot of money, and we expect this plan to see lower energy bills.” to its lowest level.

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Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison – Photo from The Guardian 3/14-2022

Government subsidies have helped bring down the cost of solar panels, which the Greens want to implement with batteries, a practical way to tackle the climate crisis and ease cost-of-living pressures, Bandt said.

The Green Party plan, which was commissioned by the Parliamentary Budget Office, is expected to provide $17.1 billion in investment in electrifying Australian homes, another $14.8 billion in small business electrification, and $12.6 billion in installing small batteries in homes and businesses over the remaining term. of the contract.

Australia’s Green Party faces stiff competition from a coalition led by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, which has pledged to increase support for natural gas and coal projects, in apparent disregard of the country’s climate goals.

Cover the costs of the plan

To pay for these plans, the Greens will rely on the new “billionaire tax”, which will require big companies to generate what it describes as “excessive profits” to pay the “super corporate profit tax”, while excluding billions of dollars in subsidies for Australia’s coal, oil and gas giants.

According to Bandt, Australia has so much sun and wind that clean energy can be produced cheaply, and by subsidizing homes and businesses to install batteries and get rid of gas, it is a win-win for the climate and cost of living.

The Greens are working to get businesses to support lower energy bills, by helping with the upfront costs of moving away from gas and switching to electricity, whenever possible.

The party’s plan is to create a 100% publicly owned, non-profit electricity retailer by retooling the retail division of Snowy Hydro to create Power Australia, which will provide all Australian homes and businesses with electricity at cost.

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