SOLAR batteries will be provided at half price for 10,000 homes that already have the solar panels should Labor win the state election in November.
In Ararat on Tuesday, Premier Daniel Andrews announced a $40 million program which the state government aims to see solar panels, solar hot water or solar batteries installed in 720,000 homes in the next 10 years.
Mr Andrews said eligible homeowners will be able to save almost $5000 on installation of a battery storage unit. He said those with an average 11kwH battery would save around $650 a year on electricity bills in addition to savings already made with the installation of solar panels.
Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said the battery program will be available in growth areas where there were already a large number of homes with solar panels.
She said it would pave the way for future microgrids allowing households in a local area to share their stored power to lower electricity prices even further.
“This is about modernising our electricity grid to help us transition to a more affordable, reliable and clean energy system,” she said.
Mr Andrews said it was hoped that one million homes around the state will be fitted with solar energy within 10 years.
He said it will also save Victorians more than $500 million a year on their electricity bills once the program is complete.
He also said a new independent agency – Solar Victoria – will be established to work with industry, regulators and training organisations to deliver the program.
“This is a game changer for Victorian families fed up with big corporations that have been price gouging ever since Jeff Kennett and the Liberals privatised our electricity,” Mr Andrews said.