Young Victorians have today welcomed commitment from the Victorian Liberal party to support schools with funding for solar power, yet are calling on both major parties to go further and implement a comprehensive plan for renewable energy in schools.
“It’s fantastic to see the Victorian LNP unveiling a plan to support solar in every Victorian public school. Our schools have huge potential to be renewable energy hubs, reducing emissions and providing major financial savings for both schools and the wider community,” Laura Sykes of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition said.
“While today’s package is a great start, Victoria has an opportunity to go much further and turn our schools into renewable energy hubs to ensure a safe, sustainable future for every young Victorian.
“The AYCC has developed a comprehensive plan for repowering our schools that both major parties should commit to. Our research, using State Government data, demonstrates that much greater investment is needed to fully realise the benefits of clean energy in schools.
“With real commitment to renewables, investment of $97 million would transform our schools into clean energy hubs, delivering huge long-term savings and creating the equivalent emissions reduction as taking 11,500 cars off the road,” Laura Sykes explained.
The AYCC is supporting students across Victoria to start a conversation about renewables in their schools. In 2017, the organisation supported 50 Victorian schools to transition to clean energy.
“This is an issue of great importance to students across Victoria, who care about having a safe climate and sustainable future. Dozens of students have spent the last few months sharing our research with their MPs and candidates to gain commitment for solar in schools. They are excited to see their vision for clean energy being listened to by those in Parliament,” Laura said.
“Schools need more than a single $10,000 grant if they are to truly realise the benefits of solar energy. Actioning our full plan will pay off in spades, by creating $235 million in savings for schools over the lifetime of the solar panels, funds which can be reinvested back into education, student leadership and sustainability programs.
“We’re calling on both major parties to recognise these benefits and back the full transition to clean energy for our schools,” Laura Sykes concluded.
AYCC’s policy paper, A Plan to Repower Our Schools, can be found at: bit.ly/repower-vic-schools
Laura Sykes and students involved in the Repower our Schools campaign are available for interview. For interviews and media enquiries:
Alex Fuller - AYCC Communications Manager
The Australian Youth Climate Coalition is a network of over 100,000 people fighting for clean energy and a safe climate for our generation and future generations.