Bendigo Sustainability Group has welcomed the Victorian government’s announcement of a new Solar Homes program, which has created a 50 percent rebate for solar panels for owner-occupiers.
Premier Daniel Andrews announced the Solar Homes program on Sunday which will be available to Victorians with a household income of up to $180,000, who live in their own home, valued at up to $3 million.
Mr Andrews also promised to establish an independent agency Solar Victoria if his government is re-elected.
He said if re-elected the government would allow Victorians to pay back the post-rebate cost of their system over four years, with an interest free loan.
The government estimated the program would see solar panels installed on 650,000 homes over ten years.
He said this could allow Victorians to save $890 a year on power bills.
Sustainability Group president Chris Weir said the initiative would encourage people who have been thinking about getting solar to act.
Mr Weir said he was confident the Solar Homes program would bring local energy into the community, encourage people to adopt solar and create local jobs.
He said some of the main barriers he sees to solar adoption is when homes are not orientated north, or vegetation hampers installation.
He said the region already has a high proportion of solar adopters, with as many as 30 per cent of homes in areas such as Axedale using solar.
“We’re really excited about this proposal,” Mr Weir said.
“This is going to have a fantastic impact across our community… I’m really hopeful that it will cater for the low income and disadvantaged groups, because electricity is of course one of the most expensive parts of their weekly bills.”
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