VIRTUAL POWER PLANT

The Hon. G.G. BROCK (Frome) (15:11): My question is to the Minister for Energy and Mining.  

Can the minister advise the house how many of the 1,100 Housing Trust homes that have participated in the virtual power plant scheme are located in regional South Australia and in particular the electorate of Frome?  

With your leave, sir, and that of the house, I will explain further. 

 Leave granted.  

The Hon. G.G. BROCK: Yesterday, in answer to a question from the member for Heysen, the minister indicated that 1,100 Housing Trust homes now have solar and batteries installed and they are achieving incredibly well for those people and that they are thrilled to be providing Housing SA tenants directly cheaper electricity through these schemes. I would be interested to know how many of those are in regional South Australia and the electorate of Frome. 

 The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN (Stuart—Minister for Energy and Mining) (15:12): Thanks to my neighbour, the member for Frome. Yes, you’re quite right and I also said yesterday that those people were receiving a 22 per cent discount on the default market offer, which by any point of view would be a very good electricity price to receive. I know that there are a lot, a significant number in regional South Australia. I would be very pleased to come back to the member with the specific number in Frome. I would be really pleased to do that. 

 I have certainly visited homes that have this equipment as part of the Tesla SA VPP around the state in regional areas, so I know they exist. It’s working very well. Our government is very focused on making sure that everything that we do, wherever possible, benefits metropolitan and regional people across the state and remote people in the outback, something that we came to government very clearly with. We are going to reduce costs of living and we are going to increase jobs. All the things that we are going to do were to benefit the entire state, not just to focus on metropolitan Adelaide, as we all know we saw for the decade leading up to the last election. 

 For the member for Frome, I would be really pleased to get that breakdown. In fact, I can break it down into different communities within the electorate of Frome, which would help my friend and neighbour. This program is very important, so I am really pleased that he raised it because getting the cost of living down for all South Australians in as many ways as possible is incredibly important.  

The people of Port Pirie and other people in Frome, under our government, have received cheaper NRM levies. They have received cheaper electricity. They have received cheaper water— in fact, approximately a 20 per cent reduction in the cost of water under the Marshall Liberal government for the people in Port Pirie. They have received a wide range of cost-of-living reductions across the entire electorate. I know that the people of Port Pirie are very thankful to the Marshall Liberal government for what we are doing for them, and there’s a lot more to come.  

We work every day, among other things, to try to get the cost of living down for the people across our state, not just in Adelaide, as was the case before the last election, but certainly for the people of Port Pirie, for the people of Port Augusta, for the people of Whyalla, for the people of the South-East, for the people of Eyre Peninsula, for the people of the Riverland. Every corner of this state is benefiting from the work of the Marshall Liberal government getting down the cost of living.  

We are doing an enormous amount with regard to health services and other things as well. The people of Port Pirie would be very aware of what the Marshall Liberal government is doing for them, and it started on the day we were elected.