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People Power Plan

Reducing power bills and emissions

People Power Plan

Cost-of-living is the issue which dominates every conversation right now - and high energy bills are central to people’s concerns.

These bills have been driven-up by our dependence on expensive gas and unreliable coal-fired power.

But there's a way out of the fossil fuel trap.

Households with rooftop solar save up to $1,800 per year. Switching-out gas for efficient electrical alternatives reduces bills by up to $1,600. Improving home energy performance delivers further savings.

All of these measures also make a vital contribution to reducing our carbon emissions.

Why we need to act.

But more than half of households are locked-out of the electrification opportunity.

They’re the renters, apartment dwellers, and people who can't afford the up-front costs of upgrades.

It is not fair that they are missing out. And their pain is being weaponised by those who seek to promote unviable solutions and delay climate action. 

Following pressure from the crossbench, the government have made some welcome committments to home electrification - but they're not enough.

And without specific support for people in regional and rural Australia, there is real concern that community support for necessary large-scale renewable projects will decline.

The People Power Plan.

That's why I am calling on the government to fund a People Power Plan at the May Budget, which turbo-charges the uptake of rooftop solar, home batteries, more efficient electrical appliances, and better home energy performance. This would be a big win for cost-of-living and for the climate. 

The plan has three main pillars:

  1. Support for households being left behind – especially renters, apartment-dwellers, and those with lower incomes and savings.
  2. Support for people in regional and rural Australia – because we cannot succeed in this transition without them.
  3. Support for regulatory reform – to prevent households from being locked-in to high-cost fossil fuel energy. These reforms include an end to new gas connections, minimum energy performance standards for rentals, and mandatory energy performance disclosure when you buy or rent a home.

Drawing inspiration from the US Inflation Reduction Act and funded by taxing the windfall profits of the gas industry, the plan could help close to half a million homes to electrify over the next three years. For example, an instant asset write-off for rental properties that install heat pumps, induction cooktops and reverse cycle space heating would drive a 23% increase in rentals switching from gas to electric at budget cost of less than $50 million per year. 

I'm delighted that this call has been backed by a broad range of community organisations, including: Better Renting, Think Forward, Parents for Climate, Rewiring Australia, Smart Energy Council, Anglicare Australia, Australian Council of Social Services, Owners Corporation Network, Australian Conservation Foundation, Climate Action Network Australia, National Shelter, Electrify Adelaide, Electrify Canberra, and Climate Energy Finance. You can read their joint letter to the Treasurer here.

Read more.

  • Renew Economy - Spender calls for "People Power Plan" (link)
  • The Guardian - Would Dutton oppose a plan to cut bills and tackle the climate crisis? (link)
  • Sydney Morning Herald - The $50m idea that could save renters up to $1594 a year (link)
  • Media Release - Spender calls for “People Power Plan” to tackle cost-of-living crisis (link)

Watch and listen.

  • ABC RN Breakfast - Government urged to provide power bill relief (link)
  • Allegra's speech in parliament - calling for a People Power Plam at the budget (link)


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