Greens coming to a street near you

Greens at M.A.D.E. L-R: State Greens leader Greg Barber, Wendouree candidate Alice Barnes, Ripon candidate Rod May, Western Victorian candidate Lloyd Davies, Buninyong candidate  Tony Goodfellow. PHOTO: Jeremy Bannister

Greens at M.A.D.E. L-R: State Greens leader Greg Barber, Wendouree candidate Alice Barnes, Ripon candidate Rod May, Western Victorian candidate Lloyd Davies, Buninyong candidate Tony Goodfellow. PHOTO: Jeremy Bannister

THE GREENS have moved early in their fight to claim the Victorian parliament's balance of power.

State leader Greg Barber said voters would choose between Greens policies and Liberal policies, because Labor will "flip-flop around and eventually arrive at a position,  they're kind of a balance of power party, they have to work out who they're going to back". 

He spoke at the local campaign launch on Saturday at the Museum for Australian Democracy at Eureka about the Greens' commitment to getting out and talking to voters. 

"We've been working up to this for a long time, and there's been a huge amount of face-to-face contact happening over the winter, and as the weather warms up we're going to ramp that up even more," Mr Barber said. 

Local Greens candidates for Buninyong, Wendouree and Ripon underlined their commitment to get solar panels on roofs and buses running more often. 

Mr Barber said their goal was to get former Queenscliff councillor and water engineer Lloyd Davies into the upper house ahead of National David O'Brien, and have staked the election on voters' responses to their plan for public transport and renewable energy reform. 

"One of the key things we'd negotiate on is getting every single person with a solar panel paid the same amount for the electricity they produce as it costs off the grid, so they'll have a one-for-one feed-in tariff," Mr Davies said. 

"We'd also like to allow people to pay for their solar panels monthly, on their electricity bills, so no up-front costs, and that'll allow most Victorians who own their own home to get solar panels."

Locally, Wendouree candidate Alice Barnes said these polices would also support the industry at a time when Ballarat was opening its doors to business. 

"There's a lot of housing developments going on there. Also with the Western Ballarat employment zone, we're really keen to make sure that a big part of that is the renewables industry."

Statewide polling has put support for the Greens at 17 per cent, although they will need a big jump in Western Victoria and strong preference deals to vault Mr Davies above David O'Brien. 

However, he said, even now, they had the numbers to be "really competitive for the spot". 

"We've (also) had the greatest show of supporters we've seen in Western Victoria, hundreds of supporters coming out every weekend hosting dinners or actually doorknocking and talking to voters."  

Former Hepburn Shire mayor Rod May is running for Ripon, and scientist Tony Goodfellow is running for Buninyong. 

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