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Energy-saving grants add to bill relief for small firms


Grants of $10,000 to $25,000 are up for grabs for small and medium-sized businesses to upgrade to more energy-efficient equipment.

Energy efficiency is the single largest measure for avoiding future energy demand and getting to net-zero carbon emissions, but saving money long-term comes with an up-front cost.

Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy Jenny McAllister said on Thursday the grants would improve the bottom line of small businesses and lower emissions.

"We want to help small businesses make every watt count," Senator McAllister said.

"Investing in energy efficiency can save on energy costs, taking the pressure off small businesses and allowing them to reinvest savings to their business," she said.

Funding will be awarded on a "first come, first-served" basis until each region's allocation is used up and can cover up to 100 per cent of a project.

The Rotary Residential College in Perth, which houses nearly 100 high school students from rural and remote communities, upgraded all the air-conditioners in the recreation room to make it more comfortable and cheaper to run.

Beifang Foods secured a grant to upgrade refrigeration at their Silverwater factory in NSW.

It processes five tonnes of meat a day, supplying restaurants in Sydney, and expect to save 10 per cent on energy bills.

Local eco-manufacturer Dovetail Timbers in Tasmania said it expected to save $8000 a year on energy costs by going electric.

Round two, to open in late February, is almost triple the size at $41.2 million and will be allocated across states and territories.