Intelligent energy for community housing

Wednesday, 23 November, 2016

Cleantech start-up Evergen and community housing organisation SGCH are partnering on a pilot program which will see the installation of the Evergen intelligent home energy system — originally launched in August this year — in 10 low-income households in NSW.

The Evergen system combines the strength of solar and batteries with intelligent technology. It learns the power consumption patterns of each customer household and forecasts solar production based on analysis of local weather to build a picture of future energy flows to make smart decisions that reduce energy costs.

The pilot project, said to be the first of its kind in Australia, will provide valuable information on the benefits of the system to households that are more vulnerable to rising energy costs. As noted by SGCH CEO Scott Langford, people on low incomes would benefit the most from energy-saving measures in their homes, but cannot afford the large upfront costs of items like solar panels.

“SGCH is committed to sustainable housing design, ensuring tenants who are vulnerable to rising energy costs can benefit from savings now and in the future,” said Langford. “We are excited to work with Evergen to offer our tenants cutting-edge technology that will make a real difference to their energy bills, health and wellbeing.”

The project will see solar PV systems installed on the roofs of each household, while the batteries will be installed in a common, purpose-built shed. Each property will have its own Evergen intelligent home energy management system, allowing the systems to be tailored to each user’s specific needs to maximise their savings.

“The Evergen system has the capability for SGCH tenants to save significant amounts off their household energy costs,” said Evergen CEO Dr Glenn Platt. “As well as reducing energy costs, we hope that by providing the tenants with more information about how they consume energy via the Evergen app, we can empower them to better manage how they use energy.”

The program is expected to save SGCH tenants up to 80% of their energy bills. It is being co-funded by the Office of Environment and Heritage, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and SGCH.

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