New funding for community organisations to reduce costs and greenhouse gas emissions

Published: 8 July 2021

The $3.1 million Community Climate Change and Energy Action Program enables community organisations across Victoria to reduce their operational costs and greenhouse gas emissions. This program is supported through the Victorian Government’s COVID-19 stimulus program and will contribute to reaching Victoria’s target of zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Supporting local community organisations

Over the next 2 years we will deliver grant funds to approximately 100 Victorian community organisations, such as kindergartens, leisure centres, sporting centres, neighbourhood and community houses.

Two funding streams are available:

  • Stream one offers grants of up to $5,000 to support energy audits of community facilities. These audits provide community organisations with the full picture of their facilities’ emissions profile, with the baseline information to start reducing energy costs and emissions.
  • Stream two provides grants of up to $25,000 to implement energy efficiency improvements. Community organisations looking to go one step further and power their facilities entirely by on-site renewable energy sources and work towards net zero carbon can access up to $50,000.

Projects could include upgrades to heating and cooling systems and equipment, shading, insulation, double glazing, lighting and renewable energy installations such as roof-top solar panels.

Enhancing energy performance

By implementing energy efficiency upgrades to their facilities, community organisations will reap significant benefits including:

  • lower maintenance bills
  • more comfortable surrounds
  • reduced energy use and costs
  • increased asset value
  • deferred capital costs and lower maintenance costs (well-tuned equipment lasts longer and breaks down less often)
  • increased appeal to tenants and longer leases
  • reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

Extending the energy management of community facilities

The Community Climate Change and Energy Action Program builds on the Local Government Energy Saver Program that was offered to municipalities with a lower capacity to respond and adapt to the challenges of climate change.

As a result of facility upgrades across the 22 participating councils the program saved an estimated $40,000 per year in energy bills. The program also made a significant contribution to emissions reductions with an estimated 38,355 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e) abated, which is the equivalent of taking 11,622 cars off the road.

The Community Climate Change and Energy Action Program extends support to all Victorian community facilities owned by local government.

Three funding rounds will be available, with round one applications closing on 20 August 2021.

An information session will be held on 21 July at 10:00 am.