Residents in one of Australia’s largest cities are told how they can reduce their electricity bills by at least $ 4,700 per year.
A program to “rewire” Australia’s third largest city boasts electricity bills that can be cut by nearly $ 5,000 per year using technology that is almost entirely standard and available today.
The Rewireing Australia project launched on Monday is using Brisbane as a stepping stone to encourage homeowners to switch to solar power, move away from gas heaters and invest in electric vehicles.
The campaign, led by an “upbeat group of impartial Australians”, ultimately aims to demonstrate that it is possible to tackle climate change and concerns about the cost of living at the same time.
The project comes as household spending dominates the political news cycle and major political parties attempt to claim the best mix of power for the moving nation.
While acknowledging the inevitable upfront costs, Rewiring Australia founder and chief scientist Dr Saul Griffith says families switching to solar, storage and electric vehicles can save $ 4,700 annually on their electricity bills by 2030.
Dr Griffith said this initial model is based on potential voter uptake in South East Queensland’s Brisbane, Longman and Griffith, but the program also plans to look at other polling stations across the country.
“Our research shows that Australia can lead the world by electrifying our homes and vehicles and powering them with renewable energy,” says the engineer and inventor.
“As entire communities and cities update and electrify themselves, the benefits will be amplified and shared. Less money will be sent out of the community and offshore from Australia.
“Billions of dollars can be held in local communities and thousands of additional local jobs can be generated.”
Potential for 24,100 jobs
According to the new research, the full electrification of 230,000 households across Brisbane would reduce emissions by 42.4% and save households $ 3.9 billion over eight years.
This, in turn, would support the creation of 24,100 indirect jobs and send $ 200 million annually to upgrade, install and maintain a new home appliance network.
It is no coincidence that the campaign is launched in parallel with the federal elections.
Dr. Griffith says there are four key federal policies that can help the vision come true.
Rewireing Australia wants to see $ 100 million committed to pilot programs in two urban and two rural communities that help showcase the benefits of solar, battery and electric technologies.
The campaign therefore estimates that the federal government will have to spend $ 12 billion to subsidize the cost of all 11 million Australian households to switch to solar power and storage for homes and vehicles.
Whoever is in government will also have to commit to forming a national workforce to upgrade and maintain electrified homes and cut the “brown tape” that prevents the installation of private and shared electric vehicle chargers.
The work promises to upgrade the power grid to correct energy transmission and reduce energy prices, and says it will make electric vehicles cheaper with an electric car discount and a national strategy for electric vehicles.
In addition, it will launch 85 solar banks across Australia to ensure more households can benefit from solar power on their rooftops, install 400 batteries per community across the country, and invest in 10,000 new energy apprentices and a new energy skills program.
The Coalition says it will continue to keep energy prices low by investing in wind, solar, hydro and natural gas projects, as well as microgrids to support regional and remote communities.
In addition to a “technology, not fiscal” approach, the government is also planning to force energy retailers to respond and ensure that “you put their customers first”.
The Greens, meanwhile, are calling for an immediate ban on building new coal, oil and gas infrastructure, ensuring the nation can switch to zero-carbon energy while maintaining a safe climate.
The party is also prioritizing helping mining workers and communities “by creating long-term sustainable industries to help overcome fossil fuels.”
Originally published as How ‘electrification’ could save you $ 4,700 on electricity bills