22 June 2017

Labor leads with its pledge to ramp up rooftop solar and storage 

Labor's solar power and energy storage pledges today raise the bar for Premier Gladys Berejiklian and the NSW Coalition, according to the NSW Nature Conservation Council and Australia Conservation Foundation.

NSW Labor leader Luke Foley has pledged in his Budget Reply speech to install solar panels on public sector buildings and signaling the need for 100MW of grid-connected battery storage before summer.

“Labor's solar and storage pledge is very welcome and raises the bar for Premier Gladys Berejiklian,” NCC Senior Climate and Energy Campaigner Dr Brad Smith said.

“These solar and battery initiatives will provide a much-needed boost to energy supply and reduce the state’s dependence on expensive gas.

“We desperately need to cut climate pollution and reduce energy prices, but we won’t achieve either without more of these sorts of policies. All parties need to plan to get us to 100% renewables by 2030.

“NSW is one of the worst performers in Australia when it comes to renewables, sourcing just 7% of its electricity from wind and solar.

“Households have led the switch to clean, renewable energy, and now it’s time for the government to follow suit by installing solar on public buildings.”

Dr Smith said the battery storage proposed by Mr Foley would make the system more reliable coming into the peak demand next summer, and help prevent price spikes.

“It’s an essential part of a clean energy system and it’s time for NSW to update its grid by installing large battery facilities,” he said.

“We urge Premier Berejiklian to step up to the plate on renewable energy when her government releases its final Climate Change Fund Strategic Plan in coming weeks.

“The government has foreshadowed an announcement on storage, which we hope is included in the government’s climate plan and implemented by summer.”

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