Capire supported the Cities of Melbourne, Port Phillip and Yarra to engage with their communities on neighbourhood batteries


Fast-tracking Neighbourhood Batteries Project


Neighbourhood batteries can play an important role in the transition to 100% renewable energy by strengthening the electricity network and making it easier for people to access clean, affordable energy. Capire supported City of Melbourne, City of Port Phillip and City of Yarra to engage with their communities on neighbourhood batteries as part of the Fast-tracking Neighbourhood Batteries Project.

This Project is about understanding the technical challenges to delivering neighbourhood batteries and community sentiment, as well as the opportunity for support to accelerate the roll-out of neighbourhood batteries across inner urban councils. It aims to shed light on the benefits to the community and the operational costs.

The Project is supported by the Victorian Government through the Inner Metro Partnership, in response to the need for more locally available renewable energy to enable the energy transition.

  • Client
    City of Melbourne, City of Yarra, City of Port Phillip
  • Year Completed
  • Location
    Melbourne, Victoria
  • Community Champion Volunteers
    Watch the video

Engagement approach
The engagement program aimed to inform the public and gauge their sentiments. We wanted to understand how people felt about potentially having a neighbourhood battery in their local area, including what benefits they would like to see and their thoughts on specific locations.

First, we needed to develop people’s understanding of the options available and their capacity to identify preferred sites and models. By presenting different operating models through the engagement, we could demonstrate the limitations and opportunities that different models provide, and engage the community on what factors are most important to them.

The engagement occurred over two stages. Stage one started broad – gauging levels of community support at a municipal level. Stage two focused on communities around specific locations that will progress to feasibility assessment (this is being led by the Yarra Energy Foundation).

What we learned
We found strong support for neighbourhood batteries and renewable energy more broadly. We also heard some concern around safety, maintenance and long-term investment costs. However, people were generally interested and willing to learn more.

This Project will help the councils understand how to target locations where there is existing community support and where communities can benefit most.

Read more about this project