WWF-Australia is calling for a renewable-led recovery. Of this includes a $70 million Aboriginal Solar Stimulus that would lower power bills, reduce energy poverty, create local jobs and contribute to a cleaner future for generations to come
There is a unique opportunity for developing a solar stimulus program driven by communities and peak organisations in remote and regional areas, that also addresses many of the Closing the Gap targets. The benefits of an Aboriginal Solar Stimulus include:
• Local solar cuts the cost of energy: For community facilities that operate during the day, like kindergartens, health care centres and community stores, solar can make a big difference to the bottom line, freeing up funds for core activities.
• Solar is also a great economic stimulator: Last year, roof-top solar systems accounted for 13,070 jobs, while large-scale solar accounted for 4,740 jobs.
• Local solar projects also generate demand in the local economy: This local economic stimulation will be positively compounded in regional and remote communities, who rely on costly diesel and see community solar as a way to provide a reliant and cheaper supply of energy, as well as a way to stay on Country. Sustainable energy, coupled with targeted funding would generate long term training and employment opportunities and contribute to the overall health and well being of the community.
• Local solar will create Indigenous jobs. The stimulus program would also provide an opportunity to work with, engage and grow Indigenous businesses.
Read the full Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Solar Stimulus briefing paper here, and watch the video below to learn more about the potential impact in Indigenous communities.