Regional households will be able to reduce their power bills, thanks to $85 million for clean energy programs announced recently by the NSW Government.

“Tackling high energy costs is a top priority for our Government and this significant investment puts further downward pressure on energy bills for homes in regional NSW,” said Premier Gladys Berejiklian adding that her government was doing everything they can to help families and businesses take control of their power bills.”

A $30 million program will enable communities across the State to build their own local clean energy projects including a solar and battery business in Byron, that will use solar, wind and storage technology to power local homes and businesses. Funding will also be available to develop backup power systems for up to 70 communities.

According to the government, each community will be able to save up to $2750 per site per year on their energy bills. These community projects also reduce pressure on the grid, which will help to lower future network costs.

Parliamentary Secretary for Renewable Energy Ben Franklin said: “NSW regional communities, including the State’s north coast, will benefit from the jobs and investment opportunities as our State transitions to a more reliable, affordable and modern energy system.”

The funding also includes $55 million to help the private sector develop and accelerate clean energy technology for regional communities, such as pumped hydro.

Minister for Energy and Utilities Don Harwin said: “The NSW Government is lowering barriers for investment for the emerging energy projects of tomorrow.

“These projects will help regional communities make the most of their energy resources, while also helping to further boost NSW’s energy security.”

The announcement comes after the Premier announced a major investment in energy efficiency measures, including funding for energy efficiency upgrades for families and businesses, energy efficient bulbs in 60,000 street lights, and solar panels for homes and Government buildings.