Research shows that to reach net zero emissions in our economy, Australia needs to electrify homes on a wide scale. At Bank Australia, we’ve been thinking about how we can help make this change happen.
From October 2023, we’ll be supporting up to 50 eligible customer households in Victoria to take steps towards an all-electric home as part of our Electrify Your Home pilot.
“We know getting homes off gas is critical for climate action and this pilot will help us demonstrate the role banks can play to make this more achievable,” said Jane Kern, Head of Impact Management.
There are a range of benefits that come from going electric at home, including improvements for health and potential savings on energy bills. But there are also complexities and costs to consider, which is where our pilot comes in.
The Electrify Your Home pilot will help us understand what the challenges are for customers getting a home off gas. We’re hoping to learn ways we can scale up home electrification in future.
“Over 90% of Bank Australia’s emissions come from the homes we finance, so working out ways to support customers with reducing the carbon footprint of their homes is a big priority for us,” said Jane.
Who’s involved in the Electrify Your Home pilot?
We’re working with BOOM, an Australian climate-tech business that will provide the home electrification assessment our customers will use in the pilot. We’re also working with Boundless Earth, which uses investment and philanthropy to drive climate solutions, and The Australia Institute, a leading public policy think tank.
BOOM’s online platform provides personalised recommendations for households based on their home’s current systems and appliances, and factors in what could have the biggest impact on reducing energy costs and emissions. The platform also connects customers with quotes from qualified suppliers and installers, or they can have a supplier of their choice complete the upgrades.
Upgrades covered by the pilot include switching out gas stoves, heating and hot water systems for electric alternatives, and installing solar panels. Customers can choose the best option for their home and budget, and we can help with financing options for eligible customers.
Supporting Victoria to get off gas
We’ve chosen to run this pilot in Victoria because, of all Australia’s states and territories, Victoria is the one that relies most heavily on gas. And while we’re pleased to see the Victorian and ACT governments announce bans on gas in new homes and public buildings from 2024, there are currently 5 million homes connected to gas in Australia. That’s why retrofitting existing homes will play a big role in the energy transition and achieving a safe climate future.
We’re starting the pilot in the Latrobe Valley before potentially broadening to other Victorian customers. Around a third of our workforce is based in the Latrobe Valley and we recognise the impacts transitioning the economy off fossil fuels will have on communities in the region. We’re committed to supporting a just energy transition and climate justice is a core part of our climate action strategy.
“There are some parts of our economy where getting off gas is going to be more complex, but switching from gas to electric appliances and systems in the home is entirely achievable with the right supports. We want to enable our customers to do this and believe our pilot will really help us decide what comes next,” said Jane.
Find out more
We’ll keep our customers up to date on how the Electrify Your Home pilot is going in the months ahead. Learn more about how to get started with going electric at home. Renting? Check out our top tips for energy efficiency when renting your home.