An elected NSW Labor Government will support 500,000 households to install roof top solar and help reduce their electricity bills over the next ten years through its Solar Homes policy.

This program will take NSW to over a million solar homes. Based on current take up rates for household solar, the program could help add solar to an additional one million homes over the next decade.

Labor’s Solar Homes policy will give households across NSW the chance to add solar panels to their homes and enjoy cheaper, cleaner and greener energy.

Under Labor’s Solar Homes policy, owner-occupied households in NSW with a combined income of $180,000 or less would be eligible for a rebate, to be capped at $2,200 per household.

On average, households could expect to save up to $600 a year off their electricity bills.

This policy will create a “virtual” power plant for the state, generating up to an additional 2GW/2000MW of power once fully installed.

By comparison, Bayswater Power Station has a capacity of 2.64GW/2640MW and Mount Piper has a capacity of 2.8GW/2800 MW.

Clean Energy Council Chief Executive, Kane Thornton, said, “NSW Labor’s strong commitment to support an additional half a million households in the state with solar rebates of up to $2200 per household over the next decade will also ensure a vibrant industry and provide expanded opportunities for solar businesses and installers.”

The Smart Energy Council also strongly welcomed the policy announcement. CEO John Grimes said, “This will be a massive boost for families struggling with power bills and a real fillip for the NSW solar industry.

“We also call on the NSW Government and Opposition to adopt policies that encourage families to purchase smart batteries that will help families store their energy for later use and also strengthen the electricity grid.”

The program would be phased in, starting in the 2019-2020 financial year, to ensure an orderly rollout.

To ensure the safe installation of solar panels the program will also support workforce development, training and accreditation of electricians who will install the panels.

NSW Labor’s Deputy Leader and Shadow Minister for the Environment, Penny Sharpe, said, “Under this plan, everyone wins. Families get help with their electricity bills and we are taking real action on climate change and giving NSW a cleaner, greener future.”

NSW Labor’s Leader in the Legislative Council and Shadow Minister for Energy and Climate Change, Adam Searle, said, “Solar Homes is just one aspect of Labor’s plan for cheaper and cleaner energy across NSW. Our policies will cut both electricity bills and carbon emissions. We look forward to providing more in the lead up to the election.”

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