DAIRYFARMERS across SA are being encouraged to take part in a federal scheme aimed at reducing their power bills and emissions.
From this week, dairyfarmers can apply for grants to support them in making their energy use more efficient through the government's Energy Efficient Communities program.
Grants of up to $20,000 will be available for a dairyfarming business to upgrade equipment to reduce energy consumption, invest in monitoring systems to better manage energy use, and conduct energy audits to investigate other opportunities for energy efficient activities.
Energy use in milk cooling, milk harvesting and hot water production is one of the highest overheads in the dairy industry, costing dairyfarmers as high as $12,800 per 100 cows each year.
Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor said the program was focused on helping dairyfarming businesses to lower their power bills by becoming more energy efficient.
"Farmers have long been at the forefront of innovation to reduce their cost of doing business and their emissions output, but energy costs remain high for many in our dairy sector, especially when farmers are doing it tough on the back of bushfires and COVID19", he said.
"The government's support will help dairyfarmers in their efforts to better manage their energy use while also continuing to play a role in reducing global emissions."
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Federal Member for Barker,Tony Pasin said dairy farming businesses were a huge asset to regional economies.
"These grants will provide support at a time when so many in the agricultural sector are struggling," he said.
"Supporting the long-term sustainability of our dairyfarmers is critical to the sustainability of regional Australia."
The Energy Efficient Communities Program was announced as part of the Government's Climate Solutions Package in the 2019 Federal Budget with $10 million made specifically available for dairy.
To ensure an equitable distribution across dairying regions, funding will be available in each state in proportion to the number of dairy farms.
Grant guidelines and application forms for the dairy round are available at business.gov.au, or by telephone on 13 28 46. Applications will close on August 17.
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