In 2022, the Federal Government announced $200 million in funding for the Community Batteries for Household Solar budget measure to deploy 400 community battery projects across Australia.
What is the Community Batteries for Household Solar program?
Solar power is an important source of renewable energy – but it can only be generated during the day when the sun is shining. Community batteries can help to store excess solar power for use at other times when solar power is not being generated. Community batteries can help support lower electricity bills, reduced emissions, and reduced pressure on the electricity grid by helping to balance fluctuations in energy supply and demand throughout the day.
Through the Australian Government’s Community Batteries for Household Solar program, it is estimated that approximately 400 community batteries will be installed across Australia over four years.
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is administering the latest round of funding.
Learn more about the Community Batteries for Household Solar Program, including eligibility requirements.
The roles of Synergy and Western Power
In WA, the South West Interconnected System (SWIS) is our primary electricity network. The SWIS spans from Kalbarri in the north, to Kalgoorlie in the east and to Albany in the south. Within the SWIS:
- Synergy generates and sells electricity to customers
- Western Power owns and is responsible for operating and maintaining the electricity network infrastructure
Unlike in other Australian states and territories, Synergy and Western Power are both Government Trading Enterprises. In the SWIS, Western Power is the sole distribution network service provider and Synergy is a major participant in the wholesale electricity market and the only electricity retailer to non-contestable customers.
With national programs such as the Community Batteries for Household Solar, both Synergy and Western Power are uniquely placed to provide support to applicants for funding from the program.
Proposals and applications
Synergy welcomes the opportunity to discuss how it may be able to support proposals by prospective applicants for funding.
Please note that:
- Synergy expects that consideration will be given to how households can benefit from community batteries proposed by the applicant. If you wish to engage Synergy to support your application please ensure this is taken into account, including any financial impact it would have on a proposal.
- To ensure community batteries are placed in locations where the grid needs the most support, Synergy encourages applicants to first engage with the network operator for the SWIS – Western Power.
- Any party interested in pursuing the ARENA funding opportunity with Synergy's support or wishing to discuss a potential joint application or proposal should reach out to email@example.com.
Community Batteries for Household Solar Program FAQs
- How many community batteries are being installed?
It’s estimated that there will be approximately 400 community batteries installed across the country.
- How many community batteries will WA be getting?
As at 15 April 2023, funding for six community batteries in WA have been confirmed. These community batteries are proposed to be located in Coogee, Dianella, Kinross, Port Kennedy, Stratton and Bayswater.
The total number of community batteries in WA will be announced once the funding round is complete.
- How will the community benefit?
Community batteries can play a significant role in strengthening the network by assisting to improve the reliability of power supply and helping to smooth out supply and demand in electricity, known as the Duck Curve.
In turn, more battery capacity can also support the continued ability for households to install rooftop solar PV.
There is also potential for community batteries to be located in areas where the grid is under increased pressure.
The Community Batteries for Household Solar program is intended to support the lowering of electricity costs and emissions, support the storage of excess solar energy, reduce pressure on the network and enable further household solar installations.
- How can I find out if a community battery may be installed in my community?
The final decision on which applications are successful will be made by ARENA. For further information, your local council will be aware of any applications in your area.
- I have another question that has not been addressed here
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.