A new $3.77 million government fund is being made available to help Invercargill businesses using fossil fuels for heating to make the change to low-emission energy sources.
Great South is administering the Government Waihōpai / Invercargill Decarbonisation Contestable Fund in partnership with the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA), as part of the New Zealand Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund.
Applications for the Contestable Fund are now open and commercial businesses within the Invercargill City Council boundary have until Friday 29 April 2022 to apply.
Great South Strategic Projects General Manager Stephen Canny said it was widely accepted that fossil fuels were not the way forward and this funding made change possible.
“Businesses want to make change but don’t necessarily know what the preferred options are, let alone have the funds to make the necessary changes.
“To reach net zero emissions by 2050 we simply have to do this.”
A transition away from fossil fuels used for heating, including LPG, coal or diesel, was identified in the Net Zero Southland Report released by Great South in 2021 as one of the key pathways to mitigate emissions while sustaining a positive economic return for the region.
“Great South is committed to leading Southland to net zero emissions by 2050 and this is one way to help achieve that,” Mr Canny said.
Objectives of the Contestable Fund are to accelerate decarbonisation of commercial fossil-fuelled heating systems, and to stimulate economic activity and creating jobs to help with recovery from COVID-19.
Applicants will need to provide minimum co-funding of 50% of the total project costs and the total project cost needs to be at least $50,000.
The fund is not available to state and public sector organisations, local or regional government or council-controlled organisations.
Information about the fund, including eligibility criteria and how to apply, can be found at www.greatsouth.nz