Victorian Government extends successful Grants and Assessments Program under the Agriculture Energy Investment Plan
On 20 November 2020 the Minister for Agriculture Jaclyn Symes announced an extra $30 million in funding for the Agriculture Energy Investment Plan (AEIP), that was initially launched in December 2017. This extension to the AEIP, doubles the original $30 million investment, now bringing the Victorian Government’s total investment in the AEIP to $60 million.
Delivered through Agriculture Victoria, the Victorian Government’s AEIP supports farm businesses to improve energy efficiency, manage energy costs, improve energy reliability and support own-generation capacity. The AEIP was announced in late December 2017, with free on-farm assessments being launched in May 2018 and grants opening in August 2018. Since opening, the AEIP has delivered just under $7 million in free on-farm assessments and almost $15 million in grants for energy efficiency investments and own-generation technology.
The AEIP aims to strengthen the agricultural industry’s resilience to changing energy conditions and prices by identifying opportunities to improve production practices, providing investment support, facilitating efforts to build industry skills and keeping abreast of new technologies and systems. To implement the Plan, Agriculture Victoria has engaged and collaborated with a broad range of farmers and agricultural businesses across Victoria to manage their energy use, costs and risks.
Providing real benefits for farmers across a range of sectors including horticulture, dairy, cropping and livestock, funding under the program has supported investment in technology and machinery upgrades such as new variable speed drive pumps, solar panels and more efficient energy saving cooling systems for dairy and horticulture producers, as well as the latest more efficient generators and pumps for orchardists.
The AEIP was developed in collaboration with key stakeholders, including farmers, industry groups such as the Victorian Farmers Federation, Dairy Australia and Australian Pork Limited as well as agricultural engineers, energy auditors, and Victorian Government staff across multiple teams and departments. Agriculture Victoria is working closely with industry and with energy experts, to ensure the Agriculture Energy Investment Plan continues to meet the needs of farmers.
Under the new extended plan, a new round of assessments and grants will be available to farmers in coming months. More details about the extended $30 million Agriculture Energy Investment Plan will be made available in early 2021.
For more information about the AEIP, visit the Agriculture Victoria website