Labor to invest $1B into School Solar Virtual Power Plants

Solar energy has been rapidly taken up by schools aiming to manage their growing energy bills with the
majority of consumption matching sunlight hours.

Participating schools would have solar and batteries installed onsite and their systems would be virtually
linked. The schools would benefit from lower energy bills and surplus energy in times of peak demand
and school holidays can support grid reliability and is intended to improve power prices for Australians.

Amaroo School in Canberra (600kW Solar PV) developed by Solar Choice

How will the plan be rolled out?
In the ALP’s announcement they advise the program will commence with a VPP trial across two or three
regions. No timeframe is indicated for the full rollout, but it is expected to benefit up to 4,000 schools
through the creation of up to 364MW of VPP capacity.

The ALP would allocate $1 billion of their CEFC capital to fund these projects.

Benefits for participating schools
The schools will benefit from lower energy bills with the behind-the-meter solar systems offsetting a
significant portion of their consumption. Additionally they will be able to earn a revenue stream from
selling power and other services back to the grid.

The ALP announcement includes an estimate from the CEFC which suggests small schools will be able to
reduce their energy bills by $7,000 – $15,000, while larger schools may be able to save up to $120,000.

Solar Choice can verify through previous projects, that school solar projects can deliver up to and above
these amounts in energy bill reductions.

Jeff Sykes

Chief Commercial & Industrial Strategist at Solar Choice
Jeff Sykes