Energy efficiency for
Low-income households already spend proportionally more of their income on power than do high-income households. Energy efficiency can assist in alleviating rising power costs.
Better insulation, appliances that use less power and cleaner forms of heating and cooling can help lower the amount of energy we consume. However many households need assistance to make these changes. Rather than subsidising continuing inefficient energy use, low-income Australians can be supported to use energy more efficiently so as to lower their bills and reduce the impact of climate change.
What we want
The Brotherhood of St Laurence is seeking:
- support for low-income households to improve the energy efficiency of their homes and appliances including support to upgrade high cost, high energy-using household fixtures, such as hot water systems, heating and cooling
- measures to assist renters improve the efficiency of their homes.
What we're doing
The Brotherhood of St Laurence undertakes innovative research to inform policy and service delivery, delivers quality services and advocates to government to support low-income households to improve the energy efficiency of their homes. Our recent activities include:
- advocating for programs to assist low-income households to improve the energy efficiency of their homes
- initiating the Home Energy Efficiency Upgrade Project (HEEUP), an innovative trial that will enable 1400 low-income households across Victoria to upgrade their hot water system. The project is funded by the Department of Industry and will be delivered by the Brotherhood in partnership with the Monash Sustainability Institute, AGL Energy Ltd, the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, and the Alternative Technology Association.
Our advocacy in this area is listed below, with more on our work available at Research: Energy Efficiency.
Response to the consultation on ceiling insulation in the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target scheme (PDF file, 236 KB)
Submission to the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target scheme consultation (PDF file, 134 KB)
and supporting information sheet (PDF file, 86 KB)
Submission to NSW Review of Energy Efficiency Programs for Low-Income Households (PDF file, 204 KB)
Submission to the Department of the Environment Emissions Reduction Fund Green Paper (PDF file, 317 KB)
Articles, reports, papers
Review of VEET studies (PDF file, 266 KB)
The power to save: an equity analysis of the Victorian Energy Saver Incentive in Melbourne (PDF file, 338 KB) paper presented to the State of Australian Cities conference, Sydney, 26–29 November 2013
The lead article of Brotherhood Comment August 2013 (PDF file, 680 KB) reports from our study of home energy efficiency programs in Moreland
Media release 07 July 2015
Victorian electricity retailers' charges highest in Australia: report
Media release 2 September 2013
Research shows energy efficiency can do more than just save on bills
Media discussion 25 May 2011
The Breakfast Program, ABC Radio National
John Thwaites, Chair of the Brotherhood of St. Laurence's Low Income Climate Change Task Group, and former deputy premier of Victoria, speaking with Fran Kelly.