NSW solar scheme welcome news for some low-income households

PIAC’s Energy + Water Consumer Advocacy Program (EWCAP) has welcomed the New South Wales Government’s efforts to help households with low incomes access rooftop solar systems through their $15 million solar program, announced on Friday.

‘This initiative recognises that removing barriers to rooftop solar energy is one of the most effective and enduring ways help low-income households afford their energy needs, while building a more sustainable energy system,’ said EWCAP Policy Officer, Douglas McCloskey.

The pilot program announced by the New South Wales government aims to help 3,400 households in the 5 identified regions across New South Wales, making it a small but very important step to help the more than 1 million low income households in New South Wales to get on top of their energy bills.

‘Its important that we get the design right. As people who participate in the pilot will be expected to forgo their low-income energy rebate, some people might be worse off if their solar system doesn’t work as planned, or if their circumstances change unexpectedly.’ said Douglas McCloskey.

‘The last thing we want is for a pensioner who signs on to the program then downsizes few years down the track, to lose both the benefit of the solar panels and the low-income energy rebate.

‘Issues such as these can be dealt with in the detailed design of the program, and PIAC looks forward to continuing to work closely with NSW government to get the best possible outcomes for participants in this pilot program.’

Media contact: PIAC Media and Communications Manager, Gemma Pearce – 0478 739 280

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