Media Releases


March 18, 2019

People living in the Barwon South West of Victoria will benefit from cleaner and cheaper renewable energy that will help cut the cost of power bills, with Labor’s plan to establish a Community Power Hub in the region.  
This is part of Labor’s $100 million Community Renewables Program announced in November last year.
The program is aimed at helping renters and social housing residents benefit from cheaper and cleaner renewable energy, by supporting local community renewables projects such as solar gardens on rooftops, community wind farms, energy efficiency upgrades for social housing, and grants for community groups to pilot new projects.
Labor will work with local communities, local councils and renewable energy groups to determine the best location for the Hub, but the benefits will be felt across the Barwon South West.

Australia is in an energy crisis under the Liberals. Electricity prices have increased by nearly 19 per cent over the past three years – three times faster than wages growth.
The chaotic Liberals have had eleven energy policies since 2013; their current proposal is to spend billions of taxpayers’ dollars on new coal-fired power stations. The Liberals simply and aren’t up to leading the country in the right direction.

Australians love renewable energy because they know it saves them money and it’s good for the environment. Household solar installation has sky-rocketed from 7,000 homes in 2007 to over 2 million homes today.
Labor wants to make sure that Australia embraces this future, and maximise the jobs, industry and environmental benefits of renewable energy – and most importantly Labor wants to make sure all Australians can share in these benefits, regardless of where you live.
That’s why the Barwon South West Community Power Hub is so important. It will support the development, coordination and financing of local projects to increase the uptake of renewables, including through solar PV and batteries.
The Barwon South West community is already ahead of the game when it comes to renewable energy with the coalition of community energy groups that have come under the Barwon Region Alliance for Community Energy (BRACE). These community groups include 100% Clean Bellarine, Anglesea Community Energy, Barwon Sustainable Energy Alliance, Colac Otway Sustainability Group, Geelong Sustainability Group, and Surf Coast Energy Group.
Already these groups have implemented solar PV and battery bulk-buy schemes for residents, the most recent of which resulted in an uptake of over 1.3 MW of rooftop PV, an indication of the level of support for, and commitment to, renewable energy at the local level. Across the communities, they have installed solar power systems for schools and aged care homes using donation and investment models.
These hardworking community groups just need a government in Canberra willing to back them in and support these impressive projects. The Hub will bring legal and technical expertise to the passion of community ideas.
Libby Coker, Candidate for Corangamite said, “Power prices have skyrocketed under the Liberals. Only Labor will deliver more renewable energy and cheaper power bills.

“The Community Power Hub will help deliver cleaner and cheaper energy by supporting the development and financing of local renewables projects.

“The Barwon Region Alliance for Community Energy have been leading the charge in delivering and advocating for renewable energy throughout our region. Labor will back in this coalition of community energy groups in Canberra and support renewable energy projects in Corangamite.”
Only Labor will deliver cheaper power bills, more renewables and more jobs for Australians.