A re-elect­ed Andrews Labor Gov­ern­ment will help Vic­to­ri­ans save around $890 a year on their pow­er bills with half price solar pan­els at no up-front cost.

Jeff Ken­nett and the Lib­er­als pri­va­tised Victoria’s pow­er indus­try, promis­ing com­pe­ti­tion would lead to cheap­er elec­tric­i­ty prices, but the only win­ners are ener­gy com­pa­nies mak­ing big prof­its while Vic­to­ri­ans pay high­er prices.

Labor is putting pow­er back in the hands of Vic­to­ri­an house­holds with the new Solar Homes pro­gram, which will see solar pan­els installed on 650,000 homes over ten years.

Under the $1.24 bil­lion pro­gram, Vic­to­ri­ans will be able to install a solar pan­el sys­tem for half price and pay the rest of the cost back over four years with an inter­est-free loan.

This will save the typ­i­cal Vic­to­ri­an house­hold up to $2,225 for instal­la­tion of an aver­age 4kW solar sys­tem and help them save $890 a year on their elec­tric­i­ty bills.

A new inde­pen­dent agency, Solar Vic­to­ria, will be estab­lished to work with indus­try, reg­u­la­tors and train­ing organ­i­sa­tions to deliv­er the pro­gram, which will cre­ate almost 5,500 new jobs.

Safe­ty is para­mount, and a re-elect­ed Labor Gov­ern­ment will invest $9 mil­lion to sup­port accred­i­ta­tion of 4,500 elec­tri­cians to install solar pan­els. Solar pan­el sys­tems will only be installed by accred­it­ed solar installers using approved prod­ucts to ensure the high­est safe­ty standards.

This mas­sive invest­ment will bring the num­ber of homes in Vic­to­ria with solar pan­els to one mil­lion with­in ten years, which will save Vic­to­ri­ans $500 mil­lion a year on their elec­tric­i­ty bills once the pro­gram is complete.

It will also cut our car­bon emis­sions by almost four mil­lion tonnes – the same as tak­ing one mil­lion of Victoria’s 4.6 mil­lion cars off the road – and gen­er­ate 12.5 per cent of Victoria’s 40 per cent tar­get for renew­able ener­gy by 2025.

How­ev­er, we know Vic­to­ri­ans are strug­gling with high­er elec­tric­i­ty prices right now. That’s why the Labor Gov­ern­ment will imme­di­ate­ly invest $68 mil­lion to launch the Solar Homes program.

From today, Vic­to­ri­ans will be able to install a solar pan­el sys­tem and get half of the cost back via a 50 per cent rebate.

This will be expand­ed to include the inter­est-free loan from July next year, under a re-elect­ed Labor Government.

The 50 per cent rebate on solar pan­el sys­tems will be avail­able to Vic­to­ri­ans with a house­hold income of up to $180,000 who live in their own home val­ued at up to $3 mil­lion – this means almost nine out of 10 Vic­to­ri­ans who own their own house are eligible.

Find out more at solar​.vic​.gov​.au