Aussie property developer Stocklands is joining forces with the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) to study how rooftop solar and battery storage impacts on liveability and affordability in the home.
The research project
Stocklands is building a masterplanned community known as Highlands, south of Melbourne. There’s a big focus on sustainability in Highlands, with one of the streets (aptly named Sustainable Drive), recognised as one of the first solar powered streets in the country.
Customers purchasing a property on Sustainable Drive were offered free rooftop solar and battery storage solutions, and were then given the opportunity to sign on to the research project.
Over a period of 12 months, participating residents will provide data on their energy usage, which will give researchers a better idea of how to make homes completely carbon neutral.
Rooftop solar and affordability
Amy Hogan, Stockland’s general manager of sustainability is excited about the project and the information that can be gained.
“The energy infrastructure we installed was with the intention to make the homes more liveable and affordable for residents, while vastly reducing the homes’ carbon emissions and energy costs,” she said.
“We’re looking forward to seeing the results of the program and being able to provide our future customers with real data about how sustainability features can help them save on their energy bills.”
Making homes carbon-neutral
The whole idea behind this study is to find out what it really takes to make homes carbon-neutral. While most people understand the benefits of solar, many homes with on-grid solar still have some reliance on the main electricity grid. Michael Di Russo, the CEFC’s property director, hopes the study will give a clearer picture of what’s needed to make residential homes carbon-neutral, essentially removing the need for connection to the main grid.
“The benefits of carbon-neutral housing are widespread,” he said. “It brings down energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions and also reduces stress on the electricity network.
“Understanding the energy demands of our homes is an important first step toward making them carbon neutral.”
Stocklands, supporting sustainability and change
The Carbon Neutral Homes project being run by Stocklands isn’t the first time they’ve pushed for more sustainable living. Back in 2019, they ran an initiative for homebuyers to get a reduced rate on all their solar energy needs, from panels through to battery storage.
This latest initiative, however, should give valuable insight for an industry looking to make meaningful change and help Auatralians move towards more sustainable energy solutions.