- ARENA is offering AUD 125 million funding to support microgrid technologies in remote communities
- AUD 75 million is reserved for projects for the First Nations Communities to empower them to participate in their electricity supply arrangements
- Program will be available till December 2025 or until the funds are exhausted
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has opened the Regional Microgrids Program (RMP) with a funding budget of AUD 125 million ($80 million) to deploy microgrid technologies across regional and remote communities.
Under stream A, which is the Regional Australia Microgrid Pilots, ARENA aims to fund innovative projects that accelerate the development of equipment and technology solutions for distributed renewable energy technologies.
Such projects should be able to improve resilience and reliability of electricity supply in regional areas while resolving any remaining barriers to deploy microgrid solutions.
Of the total funding amount, AUD 75 million ($48 million) is reserved for projects under stream B or the First Nations Community Microgrids that are currently dependent on unreliable, expensive polluting diesel. These communities are considered the indigenous inhabitants of Australia.
These must contribute to cleaner and reliable energy in the First Nations Communities, empowering the communities to participate in their electricity supply arrangements and the development of energy infrastructure.
Projects under the First Nations Community Microgrids Stream will be developed in consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander groups, local renewable energy experts and the administration.
Interested applicants need to respond to the expressions of interest (EOI) round, followed by submission of full applications.
The call was launched on August 25, 2023. The program will run till December 19, 2025, or until funds are exhausted. Details of the call are available on ARENA’s website.