The Andrews Labor Government is supporting Natimuk – a small Victorian wheat belt town – to reach its goal of being 100 per cent powered by renewable energy by building its own community owned solar farm.

Minister for Energy Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio today announced a funding grant of $339,000 to bring to market a 1.6MW community solar farm and create jobs in Natimuk.

Natimuk Community Energy Inc intend to build a 100 per cent community-owned solar farm, which will be capable of producing the equivalent of the town’s annual energy needs – a huge step towards being greenhouse gas emissions free.

The project is entirely community driven, with Natimuk locals combining commercial viability, strong community participation and social equity to deliver clean, affordable renewable energy and increase energy security.

The grant will assist the project to finalise the necessary approvals, connection studies, develop detailed design and operational plans and develop a financial model and market prospectus to attract investment for the construction phase.

This funding is being provided through the Labor Government’s $20 million New Energy Jobs Fund, which is supporting renewable energy projects by providing grants to companies and community groups.

These projects will give local communities more control over their energy use and costs while creating new jobs and delivering important social and environmental benefits.