Home Battery Scheme

Mr PEDERICK (Hammond) (14:17): My question is to the Minister for Energy and Mining. Can the minister please update the house on the latest figures for the Home Battery Scheme?

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN (Stuart—Minister for Energy and Mining) (14:17): Thank you.

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. A. Koutsantonis interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The member for West Torrens is warned.

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: It's hardly surprising to have the Labor Party's energy spokesman laughing, chuckling, because he opposed this program. But do you know what? Not everybody behind him opposes it.

The Hon. T.J. Whetstone: He's diesel.

The SPEAKER: The Minister for Primary Industries is warned.

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: As you know, Mr Speaker, we intend to deliver 40,000 batteries to households in South Australia. It's actually going incredibly well.

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order! We have the question. I would also like to know.

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: We reached a very important milestone recently, with over 1,000 subsidies now approved. In fact, as of Monday this week—

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: —1,046 subsidies have been approved. Importantly, subsidies of up to $6,000 per household, plus the opportunity to access low-interest loans for the balance of the purchase price of the battery, plus for the installation of new solar, if that's what the household would like, is an outstanding opportunity for households and, very importantly, outstanding for all other households and businesses in the state as well. When we take the peak off the top demand of the day through this program, all other electricity consumers will benefit from lower prices as well. We have seen a surge—more than a 250 per cent increase—in requests since the start of this year, which is fantastic by any system. We have—

Mr Malinauskas: What were the numbers?

The SPEAKER: Leader!

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: We have householders now having access to eight battery brands and more than 60 system providers. We have encouraged nearly 1,000 new jobs into the state through three new companies manufacturing in South Australia, which is fantastic. Fifteen per cent of these approvals are for households with energy concessions, who are the people that we want to help, the people who I would expect that the people on the other side—

Mr Hughes: What about Housing SA?

The SPEAKER: The member for Giles is called to order.

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: —of the chamber would want to help: lower-income people who need more support financially, quite understandably. When we look at where these 1,046 approvals have been, they have been in Port Pirie, the member for Frome's electorate and, very interestingly, postcode 5114. That covers the electorate of King and that covers the electorate of Newland—two champions of people who need support in their electorates—but very interestingly, it also covers—

Mr Brown: How many in that postcode?

The SPEAKER: The member for Playford is warned.

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: —the electorates of Elizabeth and Taylor. I know that the member for Elizabeth and the member for Taylor want their constituents to get cheaper electricity—

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: —that is more reliable. It used to be that the entire Labor Party opposed this policy. It's getting tighter and tighter and tighter. It's actually starting to funnel down just to the member for West Torrens because people in Liberal-held seats and people in Labor-held seats are benefiting from this program. Coastal suburbs down in McLaren Vale have also been very strong in their uptake of this. We are bringing batteries and diverse brands.

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: Consumers have choice. They have the opportunity of a range of batteries. They have a range of installers. They have up to a $6,000 subsidy from the government and higher subsidies for lower income people. This is an outstanding policy. This is a policy that is being delivered, that is being rolled out and that is picking up pace, while the Labor Party is an opponent—

The Hon. A. Koutsantonis interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The member for West Torrens will cease interjecting. He's on two warnings.

The Hon. D.C. VAN HOLST PELLEKAAN: —of lower prices, more reliable electricity and cleaner energy. While the opponent of cleaner energy in the front row barks away, I know that his colleagues support this program as well.