What is the Powering Communities Program?
The Powering Communities Program is an initiative that provides grants to not-for-profit community organisations to improve their energy efficiency practices and technologies.
The Powering Communities Program provides each of the 151 Federal electorates with $67,700 to fund small projects. These projects aim to assist community organisations improve their energy efficiency practices and lower their energy bills. Federal Members of Parliament (MPs) identify potential projects and invite applications from their electorate.
Community consultation is a critical element of the program. In consultation with their community, each MP must identify potential applicants and projects in their electorate and invite them to apply for a grant. Invited applications will be assessed against the program’s eligibility criteria through a closed non-competitive process.
The Powering Communities Program will run over 2021–2022. This aims to reduce energy use, improve energy productivity and reduce carbon emissions.
The Powering Communities Program will assist organisations to:
- upgrade equipment to reduce energy consumption
- undertake energy management activities and assessments, such as energy systems assessments and feasibility studies
- invest in energy monitoring and management systems
- invest in on-site renewable energy and solar-connected batteries.
The grant amount will be up to 100% of eligible project expenditure. Grants will be between $5,000 and $12,000. You must fund any expenditure over the grant amount they are awarded. You should complete your project by 30 June 2022.
To be eligible your project must:
- be aimed at saving energy and reducing energy bills for your community group
- be nominated to apply by your MP
- be located at an address in your MP’s electorate
- include eligible expenditure as defined in section 5.2 of the guidelines
- have at least $5,000 in eligible expenditure
- be undertaken in the project period and completed by 30 June 2022.
- include one or more of the eligible activities listed in Section 5.1.1 to 5.1.6 of the guidelines
To be eligible you must:
- be invited to apply by your MP
- have an Australian business number (ABN)
You must also be one of the following incorporated entities:
- an incorporated not for profit organisation
- an incorporated trustee on behalf of a trust with responsibility for a community asset or property
Incorporated not-for-profit organisations can include:
- incorporated associations
- non-distributing co-operatives
- companies limited by a guarantee
- Indigenous corporations
- religious organisations incorporated under legislation
Applications close 20 September 2021.