May 10, 2022

Haines’ household energy plan would save households thousands

Helen Haines says her proposal to upgrade home appliances and make it cheaper to install batteries would save the average household up to $5000 a year and boost the economy of North East Victoria by almost $300 million every year.

The proposal, which Haines tabled in Parliament in February, would slash the cost of home batteries by up $3000 and would offer $5000 zero-interest loans to households wanting to install solar, batteries, or ultra-efficient electrical heating systems and appliances.

“In the last few months, we have seen the cost-of-living skyrocket – petrol hit $2 a litre, and wholesale electricity costs in Victoria are up 141%. We need to see real plans to help get those costs down quickly, and that’s what I’m putting forward.”

“If you’re feeling the pinch from higher prices and bigger bills, then my plan is for you – it’s about making your life easier. And I want to see the Government get behind this plan for lower power bills.”

“The choice this election is for someone who has real ideas to deal with the cost of living crisis, and that’s exactly what I am putting forward.”

Haines today visited the home of local Wangaratta resident Peter Gotham, who is saving over $700 a year having installed a battery system, to spruik the cost savings her plan would unlock for local households.

“We’ve had solar for years and we put the battery in six weeks ago and already we’re saving about $2 a day in power bills,” he said.

“Our battery cost $16,000 which is out of reach for most people. Helen is proposing to make batteries cheaper so more people can install them and start saving money, and that’s a great thing.”

Haines said that under her plan, people would start to see savings from day one.

“It costs on average $2 per day to heat an average household with gas, compared to just 90 cents per day using an electric heat pump. The cold weather is coming, and people here in Indi know how important those heating bills are”.

“The cost of hot water for an average shower is 66 cents with gas hot water and just 30 cents with electric hot water. Under my plan, every time you have a shower, you’d be saving money.”

Haines’ proposal was described in February as the “world’s best” home energy policy by Australian adviser to US President Joe Biden and energy entrepreneur Saul Griffith.

With inflation hitting 5.1% and no end in sight, Haines said the Government should be taking real action to cut the cost of living for households.

“Cutting the fuel excise for six months was good. But the Government has no long-term plan. The best time for the Government to really invest in lowering household power bills was five years ago. The second best time is today.”

Across the electorate of Indi, Haines said that generating, storing, and using power locally would deliver a massive boost to the local economy.

“The average household spends $5000 a year on its power, gas and petrol bills. And the vast bulk of that immediately leaves our community and goes to companies in the city or overseas.

“With just over 58,000 households in Indi, that is almost $300 million that is being sucked out of region’s economy every year and going straight to power companies. My plan would keep more of that money locally.”

“That is over $82 million in Wodonga, $65 million in Wangaratta and $30 million in Benalla that is leaving our communities every single year that could be staying in our pockets, being spent in our shops.”


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