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ABC Radio National Breakfast: Indigenous communities look to solar

As heatwaves become more frequent and extreme due to climate change, the impact on Indigenous Australians struggling with energy poverty is potentially life threatening.

An Indigenous-led initiative, the First Nations Clean Energy Network, is being launched to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island communities are not left behind as the nation transitions to cheaper renewable energy.

For the full story from 16 November 2021 on RN Breakfast listen here

Featured: Norman Frank, Warumungu Traditional Owner
Dr Simon Quilty, specialist physician
Karrina Nolan, Executive Director, Original Power
Chris Croker, Managing Director, Impact Investment Partners


Cathy Van Extel

Statement from the Minister for Essential Service and Renewables and Energy:

No matter whether you live in the city, or in the bush, Territorians deserve access to reliable and affordable power. 

We recognise the customer and community need for renewable energy options for vulnerable customers. We are working with Norman Frank to find a solution for his solar system.

Transition to renewable power will improve energy systems in the bush, contribute to our renewables target and provide plenty of jobs for Territorians along the way. 

This transition will require the integration of innovative renewable energy technologies, such as renewable hydrogen, and builds on existing Government renewable energy investments and programs, including:

  • the success of the $59 million Solar Energy Transformation Program (SETuP).
  • $6.6 million in the Renewable Remote Power Program, beginning with a pilot program to supplement the power supply at Wurrumiyanga with renewables replacing diesel. An expression of interest to deliver the works is anticipated for release in early Quarter 2 2021-22 with works to be completed in Quarter 4 2021 22.
  • $8.3 million Alice Springs Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) and procurement for the $30 million Darwin to Katherine BESS that is underway.
  • $5 million Rooftop Solar in Schools program, tied to solar technology educational programs and the savings in energy costs are reinvested back into schools; and 
  • the successful Home and Business Battery Scheme.