13 Apr Australian state of Victoria in renewable energy innovation drive
The regional government of Victoria, Australia will commit AUS$1 million towards the establishment of several community hubs, which will drive renewable energy projects across the state.
Lily D’Ambrosio, Victoria’s Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, announced that $900,000 will go towards three, two-year pilot Community Power Hubs in the towns of Bendigo, Ballarat, and the Latrobe Valley region.
The community hubs aim to encourage investment in regional Victoria renewable energy projects, reduce electricity bills, while also providing legal and technical expertise and start-up funding.
In addition, the Victorian government will also explore the possibility of tapping into the renewable energy potential of empty mine shafts across the state.
An additional $100,000 will be committed towards a feasibility study which will determine the renewable energy potential of empty mine shafts.
A further $50,000 which will also be invested in investigating the potential of using solar powered pumped hydro to generate and store electricity within the vacant mine shafts
“Interest in community energy projects has increased significantly over the years, with communities wanting greater control over their energy and associated costs,” said Lily D’Ambrosio.
“Solar pumped hydro has the potential to store and generate significant amounts of energy. This feasibility study is the first key step towards realising the benefits of solar pumped hydro for the Bendigo region.”