NDIS to utilise solar and battery to ease energy costs for disabled Australians

The National Disability Insurance Scheme will take advantage of solar power and battery storage to reduce electricity costs for Australian residents living with serious disabilities.

In an Australian first initiative, inhousing has partnered with leading Australian battery and solar installer Natural Solar to integrate solar and batteries into each newly built property of eligible participants of the NDIS and save more than $1500 per year.

The first development under the partnership will include a property development in Salisbury, South Australia ahead of a wider rollout across developments around the country.

“The move to battery storage is about making an impact for those who truly need the support,” says Chris Williams, CEO and founder of Natural Solar.
“Each home will be eligible for sonnenFlat, which will drastically cut the price of power for tenants.

“Currently the national annual average cost of power is $2,000 each year. Under this new electricity plan, residents will no longer have to pay for power, and will only outlay a monthly flat administration fee of $40, saving residents up to $1,520 per year.”

“This is the first time Natural Solar has worked to build a solution of this calibre for a partnership and is amazing functionality for the occupants. This is two-fold in both the environment and the community.”

Natural Solar has also developed functionality customised to the residents of these new developments with each battery retaining a minimum of 20 per cent charge at all times to ensure a power backup in the event of a blackout.

“With the strong and rising household penetration of solar panels – and with the take up of batteries expected to increase as prices drop – it is clear that household solar systems have an increasing role in helping Australian households to manage energy costs,” said Paul Fletcher, Minister for Families and Social Services.

“Australians with disability should have access to the same energy choices in their homes – and that is why I am pleased to see this example of a specialist disability accommodation development using the latest home solar technology. I have no doubt we will see more of this in the future.

Natural Solar CEO Chris Williams with a Sonnet Eco Battery

“If this delivers more choice and lower power prices for Australians with disability, it will bring significant benefits – benefits which can be expected to increase as the technology advances.”

The first development in Salisbury, South Australia will include single storey two bedroom accessible homes with a 10kWh Sonnen Battery Eco including back up power and a 5.2kWp solar system with Q-Cell panels.

When the solar panels produce power during the day they power the homes with excess energy stored in the battery to use as the residents want. NDIS participants who want to acquire solar panels under their NDIS plan can ask for the assistance of their support coordination specialist.

“Solar and batteries open up huge potential for SDA tenants under the NDIS, and we can see the opportunity ahead which is why we’ve elected to partner with Natural Solar on this development,” says Geoff Barber, COO from inhousing.

“This is our first foray into utilising renewable energy technology on our housing developments, and we are excited to see the benefits for our tenants and in future, extend battery and solar to a wider number of residents around the country.”

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