Greens announce battery storage policy

Wednesday, 11 May, 2016

The Greens have announced a new policy to support households and businesses investing in battery storage for renewable energy.

Unveiling the policy in Canberra last week, Greens Leader Richard Di Natale and energy spokesperson Adam Bandt said they wanted to power up the battery storage industry in Australia.

To encourage the take-up of battery storage by households, the Greens will introduce a 50% refundable tax credit for individuals to assist with the cost of household solar energy storage systems. Individuals will get up to half the cost of their battery storage system covered up to a maximum of $5000 in the first year of the program.

The program will run for five years and the amount of the credit will taper off to $1500 by 2021, reflecting the projected decline in battery storage costs. A grant scheme will also be available for those on low incomes, with up to 1.2 million homes being potentially supported over the five years of the program.

Business investment in battery storage will be supported, allowing battery storage assets to be depreciated for tax purposes over an accelerated period of three years. Up to 30,000 businesses could be supported by the measure.

Both programs will be funded by savings from the reform of accelerated depreciation concessions for fossil fuels-intensive industries.

“Batteries will revolutionise our energy system by providing a distributed storage solution, enabling consumers to lower costs and use more of their own renewable energy and tackle global warming,” Senator Di Natale said.

“Australia has some of the best battery technologies in the world, and increasing battery uptake will help create advanced manufacturing jobs in regional communities,” he continued.

“We will accelerate the take-up of clean energy by redirecting money from fossil fuel tax breaks into support for battery storage in homes and businesses,” added Bandt.

“With public interest high, now is the time for a targeted, five-year support package to drive down costs and put battery storage in reach of every household and business.”

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