The Renewable Communities Program (RCP) has provided grant funding to support the delivery of implementation-ready community-led renewable energy projects.
Funding has been awarded to projects that:
- increase the uptake of renewable energy generation;
- consider energy justice and social benefit;
- promote community participation; and
- reduce greenhouse emissions.
Applications to the program opened in August 2018 and closed in October 2018. The Victorian Government announced $1.139 million to successful grant recipients on 18 December 2018 including:
Yackandandah Public Virtual Power Plant - Totally Renewable Yackandandah - $103,788
Totally Renewable Yackandandah will install solar PV and battery systems on community buildings in and around the township of Yackandandah. This will provide low cost, behind the meter, electricity to the mostly volunteer groups housed in the buildings, helping to cut costs, reduce emissions and join the whole of town 100 per cent renewable energy target.
Hepburn Wind Community Solar Farm - Hepburn Community Wind Park Co-operative - $500,000
To build the first Victorian hybrid wind and solar park, and Australia's first 100 per cent community-owned hybrid energy park. Co-locating 3MW of solar PV to accompany the 4.1MW of wind generation on site, greatly contributing to the shire's zero-net energy target by 2025 and zero-net emissions by 2030; sharing the benefits back to the community.
Skipton Hospital Straw Heating - Pyrenees Shire Council - $273,662
To replace LPG heating at the Skipton Hospital with a straw pellet fuelled heating, using locally produced straw pellets to reduce hospital heating costs. This project will reduce carbon emissions, provide additional income for local farmers, and improve local air quality by reducing stubble burning.
Powered for Life - Ballarat Renewable Energy & Zero Emissions - $7,728
The project will install a 10kW solar array on the roof of the Uniting Ballarat's 'Restore' Op Shop. This will result in operational savings that will go towards Uniting Ballarat's non-government funded programs such as Lifeline Ballarat, BreezeWay Meals & Meals for Change.
The North East Solar Benefits program - Renewable Albury Wodonga - $54,256
The installation of micro-grid enabled solar energy systems on ten Beyond Housing (social housing) homes, provided for residents at risk of homelessness. These installations will address energy poverty, providing residents with constant and affordable electricity supply. The project will also assist residents with the development of an energy efficiency plan.
Proudly Renewable Powered Disability Services - McCallum Disability Services - $49,500
The proposed 40kW solar PV system to be installed for McCallum Disability Services will reduce electricity costs by 65 per cent enabling funds to be redeployed to their supported employment program. This program provides meaningful employment for 100 people with disabilities. The solar system will see greenhouse gas emissions reduced by approximately 96 per cent.
Mirboo North Hall Precinct Project - Mirboo North Community Shed Co-operative - $88,000
There will be 82.5kW of behind the meter solar PV installed on four buildings in Mirboo North. This will significantly reduce electricity costs for community focused tenants and provide an income stream to contribute to future projects.
Helped by Solar - Coghill's Creek Progress Association - $6,363
The Coghill's Creek Progress Association will install a 6kW of solar PV system on the roof of their hall, saving on electricity costs and using the savings to provide more services to their community.
Solar Panel Installation - Stony Creek Racecourse & Recreation Reserve - $56,000
Stony Creek are facing increasing energy costs. The installation on a 24kW solar PV system will allow the community group to access the majority of their energy needs from the sun. The installation is to include micro inverters and an analytical real time monitor to help the community manage its energy consumption.