Barnaby Joyce

Helping to lower power bills in Armidale, Inverell

07 Sep 2020

The Coalition Government is supporting community groups in Armidale and Inverell to lower their power bills and play their part in helping to reduce Australia’s emissions. 

Across Australia, not-for-profit community groups have been awarded grants of up to $12,500 for energy-saving projects under the Government’s Energy Efficient Communities Program.

Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, was pleased to announce St Vincent De Paul Society was successful for grants in the New England.

The organisation was awarded two grants of $12,500 each at Freeman House (Armidale) and the Inverell Centre to implement energy efficient savings including the installation of solar panels.

“The Government is delivering on its promises and helping community organisations in Armidale and Inverell save on power bills during these particularly tough economic times,” Mr Joyce said.

“It was minus-13 degrees in some parts of the New England last month – that’s why it’s so important we continue to drive down power prices so people can afford to run the heater if they need to and so charities like Vinnies can focus their energy and finances on the people in need in our communities.”

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said up to two community groups in each federal electorate will receive support for an energy-saving project such as installing a solar PV system, upgrading to more energy efficient equipment or having an energy audit done on their premises.

“Energy bills are often one of the biggest overheads for volunteer organisations, and we want to help ease some of the financial pressures facing our hardworking community groups,” Minister Taylor said. 

“These groups are the lifeblood of our towns and regions. The more they can save on running costs, the more they can spend to support their communities.”

The Energy Efficient Communities Program was announced as part of the Government’s Climate Solutions Package in the 2019 Budget.

The program will deliver grants to help businesses and community organisations to improve energy efficiency practices and technologies, and better manage energy consumption to reduce their power bills.

In addition to grants for community organisations, the program will provide $10 million for dairy farming businesses, $9 million for small businesses and $15 million for high energy-using businesses. 

Applications are now open for the high energy business round. Further information on the Energy Efficient Communities Program is available at energy.gov.au. Businesses that wish to apply for a grant can access the guidelines and application forms at business.gov.au or by telephone on 13 28 46. 
 
(ENDS)