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NSW to fund multi-million-dollar community housing upgrades

A shot from the launch of SGCH's Belmont Street affordable housing development, helped with CEFC finance.

The NSW government is teaming up with St George Community Housing to retrofit 1400 community housing developments across Sydney.

The $5.4 million project, of which the government is contributing half the funds to, is expected to cut energy bills across the SGCH properties by about $800,000 a year.

The project will include the installation of rooftop solar PV, ceiling insulation, the replacement of electric water heaters with heat pump systems and the installation of LED lighting.

It will also contribute to sustainability improvements in new building projects.

SGCH has become a trailblazer in community housing sustainability, last year teaming up with the Clean Energy Finance Corporation in a $60 million program to create new properties built to a seven star NatHERS standard, as well as contributing to existing building upgrades.

The NSW government pilot program forms part of the $26.8 million Home Energy Action program, tasked with improving low-income household energy efficiency.

“These upgrades will relieve some of the cost of living pressure people are feeling,” NSW environment minister Mark Speakman said.

“We expect the upgrades to collectively reduce energy bills across the 1400 properties by about $800,000 every year. That’s an average of $570 dollars per property that tenants won’t be spending on their energy bills each year, and can spend supporting their families.”

SGCH Group chief executive Scott Langford said the program would ensure tenants vulnerable to rising energy costs could benefit from energy bill savings.

“The dollar savings our tenants will see from these energy efficient improvements will make a real difference not only to their energy bills but also their health and wellbeing,” Mr Langford said.

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