Australian Schools to receive $1 Billion Solar & Battery Loan Program
The Australian Labor Party has proudly announced for a $1 billion solar and battery loan program to help schools in cutting their power charges and getting to cleaner renewable energy.
The proposed program will be set up by the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and is expected to benefit up to 4,000 schools across Australia by giving access to concessional advances and supporting the production of Virtual Power Plants (VPPs) which practically connects solar and battery systems to produce energy on site and different services to the energy system.
As per Labor’s Solar Schools program, financing will be given through concessional credits that can be utilized to buy solar system as well as battery systems, either by schools or VPP project developers. Schools with existing solar panels and batteries will be able to get to the program and upgrade to a more current or bigger system.
In a media discharge from the Clean Energy Council, Chief Executive Kane Thornton said solar with on-site battery storage is a practical solution that can help schools take advantage of the sun’s energy amid term, as well as being of tremendous benefit to the energy system over the summer break.
“The $1 billion loan program announced by the ALP today would lead to a big increase in energy storage across the country, helping to improve the reliability of the energy system. These systems are also a fantastic educational resource to give students a first-hand glimpse at Australia’s move to renewable energy,” Mr Thornton said.
Benefits to Schools
Estimated savings for schools will change dependent on the size of the system however could possibly save small and big schools thousands in power charges every year. The program could also give an income stream from offering abundance control back to the lattice through VPPs.
In view of Clean Energy Council analysis, the evaluated savings figures can be found in the table below.
Schools make a great contender for solar and the formation of VPPs because they tend to use energy when demand is low and are vacant for long periods of time during the holidays, for example, summer when demand is frequently higher. The distributed system would deliver excess energy back to the grid through VPPs, diminishing electricity costs for family and businesses also. Utilizing smart technology, the interlinked systems will improve the dependability of the system and increase market rivalry.
Benefits to the energy grid
By giving more energy and system security and dependability services into the grid, Labor’s Solar Schools VPPs will have significant quality and stability benefits for the grid all in all, particularly over December and January when system reliability is experiencing tension because of demand spikes and unscheduled unit blackouts at maturing plants.
Extra services provided to the grid by school VPPs to support system functionality that includes frequency control services; voltage guideline and power factor control services; and back-up functionality in the event of grid blackouts.
Australian Renewable Energy Agency has stated, “As we transition to a more decentralised energy system, VPPs have an important role to play in harnessing the collective potential of consumer-owned energy assets like rooftop solar, batteries, smart appliances and electric vehicle charging. VPPs could see vast improvements in the reliability of the network and an increase in market competition which will ultimately benefit all customers,”
The program will add to Labor’s pledge to modernise Australia’s power system; convey 50 per cent of generation from sustainable power sources by 2030, and help accomplish Labor’s emissions reduction targets.
The Labor’s plan is a strategic and aggressive move of the government to promote sustainable energy not only to Australian households but also schools. This will be a good start to instil to students’ mind that renewable energy is the future.
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Clean Energy Council (2019, April 30). Labor’s Solar Loan Program to let the Sun Shine on Australia’s Schools. Retrieved from https://www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au/news/labors-solar-loan-program-to-let-the-sun-shine-on-australias-schools