WEDNESDAY 30 JANUARY, 2013 |
WA Greens Announce Solar Social Housing Initiative
Housing spokesperson for the WA Greens, Lynn MacLaren, has unveiled her party's
plans to slash the power bills of Western Australia's poorest families and
The $68 million plan would see all public and community housing with 1.5kW
rooftop solar power systems installed; reducing electricity bills on average by
$500 a year.
"We have around 22,000 public housing homes and apartments across WA and another nearly 8,000 community housing
units," said Ms. MacLaren. "Their roofs could be used to assist householders in meeting rising utilities costs while at the same time reducing the
state's growing carbon footprint."
The initiative paper criticises the Western Australian government's recently announced
solar-panel pilot program for public housing involving 500 properties at a cost of
$1 million; calling it inadequate, "underwhelming" and lacking long term commitment.
The Greens plan cost is based on $2000 a roof plus around $276 a home for a smart meter.
Its initiative will also provide $15 million in direct grants to the community housing sector to
install solar power systems on nearly 7,500 houses the sector manages.
The Greens state other benefits from the initiative include:
- Lowering carbon emissions by 74,000 tonnes annually
- Reducing demand for another centralised power station - collectively, the
solar panels would be the equivalent of a 45MW power station.
- Encourage the development of WA's renewable energy sector
"If we can make this much difference to our emission profile with such a simple programme, surely the State should make all efforts to facilitate
this," says the paper.
The Solar Powered Social Housing policy paper can
be viewed here
120,000 solar panel systems were installed in WA during 2010-2012. Current solar
feed in tariff
incentives for home solar
power systems in Western Australia
pay 8c to 50c per kilowatt hour for
surplus electricity exported to the mains grid.
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