Tasmanian Labor puts solar at the top of its campaign promises – PV Magazine Australia


The Tasmanian Labor Party believes Prime Minister Peter Gutwein and his Liberal Party have largely given up on solar power. Tasmanian labor leader Rebecca White is therefore pledging $ 20 million to fund loans for residential and commercial solar storage and battery facilities, as well as solar power for public schools and social housing.

Tasmania (TAS) will go to the polls on May 1 and the opposition Labor Party has presented a $ 20 million plan to fund loans to Tasmanians to buy solar power and energy storage for their houses and their businesses, in order to win the elections. Not only that, but TAS Labor has also pledged $ 5 million for solar power in public schools and $ 17.5 million for solar installations and energy efficiency improvements in social housing.

The plan calls for the use of $ 20 million to fund loans of up to $ 15,000 for batteries and solar power for residential and commercial properties. Labor leader Rebecca White said Prime Minister Peter Gutwein and her Liberal Party have been digging feed-in tariffs and she aims to ensure that Tasmanians who invest in solar power keep the value of their investment.

“Solar power owners were badly abandoned by the Liberals and saw the value of their investment plummet after the feed-in tariffs were cut,” White said. Of course, one could argue that it is difficult to maintain feed-in tariffs, as Tasmania has already reached 100% renewable energy.

Nonetheless, White notes that “the controversial new ‘solar tax’ proposed by the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) will hit the value of feed-in tariffs even further, with people to be charged for exporting energy. solar to the grid.

Given that this means restoring feed-in tariffs is now nearly impossible, White believes the only solution is battery storage. “Battery storage is equivalent to receiving a purchase price equal to the retail price charged by Aurora,” continued the Labor Leader.

These loans would be for ten years, during which the first three years would be interest-free and with low interest for the rest. “Tasmanians need to feel secure in their solar investment and under the Liberals it hasn’t,” White says.

According to World Wildlife Fund-Australia 2021 Renewable Superpower Dashboard, Tasmania is leading Australia in the energy transition, having already reached 100% renewable energies, legislate on the largest renewable energy target in the world, and is ambitious in its progress towards the production of green hydrogen.

Solar for schools and social housing

In addition to the loan plan, TAS Labor is also pledging to provide $ 5 million for the installation of solar panels in public schools. The savings that the signs would provide to said schools would also be retained by said schools.

White estimates “that by installing solar panels, each school could save about $ 22,000 per year on their electricity bill. Under Labor policy, this is a significant saving that can be reinvested in improving the learning outcomes of students at each participating school. ”

The Solar Schools Fund is an initiative that builds on the work’s $ 17.5 million plan to install solar panels on social housing.

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