Power to the people; Brisbane hears how Australia could save $9 billion on power bills - Solar Citizens

Power to the people: Brisbane hears how Australia could save $9 billion on power bills

Community members, civil society and climate groups, and energy experts will gather in Brisbane on Tuesday to discuss Queensland’s energy transition, the key policies of the major parties and plans for community action in the lead-up to the October State election.

The forum will take place the day after Queensland Energy Minister Mick de Brenni announced increased funds for the Battery Booster programme, meaning a further 1,000 households will benefit from subsidised batteries. It also takes place as the Clean Economy Jobs Bill 2024 goes up for vote by Queensland Parliament, perhaps as soon as this week.

Joel Pringle, acting CEO at Solar Citizens said “Queensland is both a global and international leader in rooftop solar, with more than 1 million rooftop solar installations.

“New analysis released on Sunday commissioned by Solar Citizens and conducted by the Australian PV Institute at the University of NSW for Solar Citizens revealed Australian households could save a massive $9.3 billion on energy bills each year by investing in the untapped solar potential of residential rooftops across the nation [1].

“Around 60% of households are locked out of rooftop solar because they have low-incomes, are renting privately or in social housing or they live in apartments. The untapped potential of those rooftops is immense.

“The untapped solar potential of Queensland households and apartments could save $1900 a year in power costs, generate an additional 1200 GWh of clean, cheap solar energy, and save about 170 megatonnes of carbon emissions over the lifetime of the solar system.

“Cleaner, cheaper rooftop solar energy is a win for both energy bill relief and reducing climate pollution.

“We welcome the Queensland Government announcement of a further $6 million investment in the Battery Booster program. The Australian Energy Market Operator has modelled that more than 200,000 household batteries will need to be installed in Queensland by 2030. The Battery Booster program is a modest start towards that goal, but is the biggest program Australia-wide towards the national target of one million household batteries by 2030.”

Clare Silcock, Energy Strategist at Queensland Conservation Council, said, “This is a critical year for climate action in Queensland.

“We’ve seen significant progress in the rollout of renewable energy in Queensland in the last few years but we need to make sure it’s done well, and the best way to do that is for people to get involved in managing their own energy use and pushing the government for strong climate action,” she said.

Speakers will outline how Queensland is progressing with the shift away from coal power to cleaner energy sources, what other states are doing, and what more Queensland could and should be doing.

Event Details:
What: Power to the People: Fighting climate change AND the cost of living
When: 1730 for 1800 start, Tues 16 April 2024
Where: QCA Lecture Theatre and Gallery (Rm: S05_2.04), Griffith University, South Bank.
Speakers (bios available on request):
● Joel Pringle, Solar Citizens
● Dr Vikki McLeod, Rewiring Australia
● Clare Silcock, Queensland Conservation Council
● Anne Kennedy, Zero Emissions Noosa
● Phillipa England, SEQ Community Alliance
● Dr Tom Dixon, Solar Citizens (moderator)

Photo attribution: Blink+/Flickr Creative Commons 

[1] Rooftop Solar Potential of Australian Housing Stock by Tenure and Dwelling Type, April