The Victorian government has set new targets for the Victorian Energy Upgrades (VEU) program, and is expanding the range of technologies that households and businesses can access.
The VEU program allows households and businesses to access discounts on energy-efficient products and services. This already includes reverse-cycle air conditioners for households, as well as a wider range of HVAC&R equipment for businesses, such as refrigerated display cabinets, refrigeration/ventilation fans, and fridges and freezers.
Using part of the $1.6 billion allocated to clean energy in the Victorian Budget 2020/21, the VEU program will now be expanded to cover a range of smart technology and innovations. This includes thermostats, home energy monitoring systems, smart water heaters and space heaters that maximise the use of rooftop solar PV, and energy-management systems for commercial buildings.
According to the government, the new targets will reduce Victorian energy consumption by 7 per cent by 2025. The targets will also deliver savings on energy bills through system-wide benefits, lowering wholesale electricity and gas prices, and by negating the need for grid upgrades.
Victorians participating in the program and implementing energy upgrades are expected to see annual average savings of at least $120 for households and $510 for businesses.
The government says that even those who do not participate will save on their bills – with households saving $150 and businesses saving $870 over the next 10 years.
The program is also projected to deliver 6.7 million tonnes of emissions abatement in 2022, building to 7.3 million tonnes in 2025. These savings are equivalent to taking 8.5 million cars off the road.
“By investing in the Victorian Energy Upgrades program, we’re empowering households and businesses to save on bills and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, while also creating more jobs,” says Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio. “It’s a win for all.”