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Expressions of interest now open for Northern Territory’s first Virtual Power Plant trial in Alice Springs

The Arid Lands Environment Centre is encouraging households with rooftop solar or a solar-battery system to sign up to the Northern Territory’s first residential Virtual Power Plant (VPP) trial to support our town’s transition to a clean energy future. 

The Solar Connect Virtual Power Plant and battery trial is an initiative of Alice Springs Future Grid, and Hayley Michener Program Manager - Community Solutions says the Arid Lands Environment Centre (ALEC) is proud to be leading Future Grid’s community-facing activities.

“ALEC has been advocating for healthy and sustainable futures in the arid lands for over 40 years. Our vision is strongly aligned to Future Grid’s aim to help our town to reach the NT’s renewable energy target of 50% by 2030,” says Hayley.

“The grid of the future is on the way. We’re becoming increasingly close to being able to power our lives with the sun, and other clean renewable sources.”

“A large majority of people want to see more renewable energy used by our town’s electricity system, and community involvement is essential to making this a reality.”

“ALEC is supporting the community get involved in the energy transition, engaging households to play a tangible role through Future Grid’s Virtual Power Plant (VPP) and battery trial.”

“Battery storage is fast becoming a key part of the renewable energy puzzle, and it’s fantastic that Alice Springs has the opportunity to lead in this space in the Northern Territory.”

“Households in the Solar Connect VPP trial will share solar and battery power in ways that benefit the Alice Springs grid. Our electricity grid is a public asset, and strengthening its reliability while increasing the amount of renewable energy in the system will benefit everyone, not just those who already have solar on their rooftop.” 

Through Future Grid, ALEC is also part of study to address the barriers to installing solar energy in low-income housing.

“82% of people in the whole-of-town survey agreed that renewables should be more accessible for renters, unit dwellers and those in Town Camps.”

“We hope this research will bring us one step closer to ensuring that low socio-economic renters and those living in community housing in Alice Springs can access affordable and clean energy.”

Households with solar or a solar-battery system installed within the past 5 years and with eligible inverters can fill out an expression of interest on the Future Grid website. Eligible participants in the VPP will receive a credit on their electricity bill and a sign-up bonus worth up to $500.

Learn more about the trial and sign up on the website

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