The Andrews government’s announcement today of $5 million for efficiency upgrades for 1000 homes in the Latrobe Valley shows that it is committed to tackling the real causes of energy unaffordability for low income Victorians, Environment Victoria said today.
Environment Victoria Efficiency Campaigner Anne Martinelli said:
“The solution to keeping household energy costs affordable is not to build more expensive, polluting coal-fired power stations, but to make sensible, low-cost improvements to our homes to cut energy waste.
“Retrofit programs like the one announced today for the Latrobe Valley also create local jobs, support local businesses and free up money saved on bills for spending in the regional economy. This announcement comes at a good time, with Earthworker Cooperative in the process of setting up its solar hot water manufacturing operation in Morwell.
“Environment Victoria’s recent Life After Coal report identified household and business efficiency upgrades and solar hot water manufacturing as potential drivers of new economic activity in the Latrobe Valley. So it’s good to see the Andrews government backing new sustainable industries that will deliver multiple benefits for the region – creating jobs, cutting household bills and tackling climate pollution. This is a win-win-win for the Latrobe Valley community.
“As things stand, with our homes averaging less than 2 stars in terms of efficiency performance, Victorians are being locked into a future of unnecessarily high energy bills and the health risks of living in dangerously hot homes during the longer, hotter heatwaves that climate change will bring.
“We also welcome the Andrews government’s promise of further efficiency announcements to come, and look forward to seeing programs such as this Latrobe Valley initiative rolled out to assist low-income households across the state.
“The government’s promised energy efficiency and productivity strategy is a great opportunity to map out a comprehensive plan for improving the efficiency of our entire housing stock, and make a real difference to energy affordability for all Victorians.
“We are looking to the Victorian government for leadership on sensible policy reforms such as better standards for new and rental homes to drive the broad-scale improvement we need if our homes are to meet the challenges of the future, and to support the transition to clean renewable energy,” Ms Martinelli said.
Anne Martinelli, Efficiency Campaigner, Environment Victoria
Office: : (03) 9341 8117 Mobile: 0417 114 088