Green dream for businesses

By Campaspe News

BUSINESSES within the Campsape Shire now have access to a funding program to support environmental upgrade projects that will save money and benefit the environment.

Mayor Adrian Weston said by signing up to an Environmental Upgrade Agreement (EUA), businesses will be able to benefit from cost-effective lending to improve the environmental sustainability of their business, reducing operating costs.

“The funds, offered by the Sustainable Australia Fund, are secured by an agreement between the building owner, financier and council,” Cr Weston said.

“The agreement allows property owners to access finance for energy-, water- and waste-efficiency projects that reduce environmental impacts.”

Many commercial tenants are unable to make changes to the building that they lease, but EUAs now make this possible.

The EUA offers 100 per cent project finance with competitive interest rates and long-term finance options. Many businesses in Victoria have already taken advantage of this program, including:

■Booth Transport in Moira Shire has saved 15-20% off energy costs since upgrading to 492 kW Solar PV, LED lighting and Tesla batteries

■A fruit grower in Victoria’s Goulburn Valley has cut its grid power consumption by one third, and its annual electricity costs by a whopping $62,000 a year, after installing 200kW of solar

■Ritchie’s IGA in Mildura has substantially reduced its energy costs since installing a 99kW Solar PV system

■Minogue Dairy Farm in Katandra West faced power outages, they have now installed a 20kW solar system and 40kWh LG Chem Lithium battery and the farm is 90% self-sufficient

The council adopted the EUA program in February this year.

“Agreements and processes have now been finalised and we are ready to support businesses in securing access to the finance,” Cr Weston said.

“A number of businesses have already expressed interest in the program with projects totalling an estimated $2 million.”

More details on environmental upgrade finance are available on council’s website, or through council’s business support officer, Stacey Fraser.