This grant opportunity was announced in January 2023 as part of the Government’s Safeguard Mechanism Reforms to support the Government’s ambition for Australia to become a renewable energy superpower.
The Australian Government has announced a total of $600 million over the life of the program. For this first round of the Powering the Regions Fund – Safeguard Transformation Stream up to $300 million is available over 4 years.
The objectives of this grant opportunity are to:
- support trade-exposed facilities covered by the Safeguard Mechanism to reduce their emissions and contribute to meeting Australia’s 2030 (and 2050) emissions reduction targets
- reduce the risk of carbon leakage, which occurs when a business responds to emissions reduction policies by moving emissions-intensive production to a country with less stringent policies
- provide skills development to existing industrial workforce in new equipment or processes that contribute to the reduction of scope 1 emissions.
The intended outcome of this grant opportunity is a reduction of emissions at trade-exposed Safeguard facilities consistent with their obligations under the Safeguard Mechanism.
Who is this for?
Owners or operators of a trade-exposed Safeguard Mechanism facility that is not a new or expanded coal or gas production facility.
A grant amount of $500,000 to $50,000,000 to cover up to 50% of eligible project expenditure
You can apply if you:
- are an eligible entity
- have an eligible project
- have eligible expenditure
Eligible Entity requirements, you can apply if you:
- are an owner or operator of a trade-exposed safeguard mechanism facility that is not a new or expanded gas or coal facility
- have an Australian business number (ABN)
and are one of the following entities:
- an entity incorporated in Australia
- company limited by guarantee
- incorporated association
You can’t apply if you are:
- the owner of a trade-exposed Safeguard facility that is also a new or expanded coal or gas facility
- an organisation, or your project partner is an organisation, included on the National Redress Scheme’s list of Institutions that have not joined or signified their intent to join the Scheme
- an employer of 100 or more employees that has not complied with the Workplace Gender Equality Act (2012).
Partner with other organisations
You can partner with one or more other organisations that also meet the eligibility criteria. But you must decide who the lead organisation is.
The lead organisation must fill out the application form.
If we give your group the grant, the lead organisation:
- signs the grant agreement
- is responsible for making sure your group follows the rules in the grant agreement
Eligible Project requirements:
You must complete your project within 4 years of the date of execution of the grant agreement.
The maximum project period is 48 months.
Your project must:
- be aimed at contributing to Australia’s emissions reduction targets by 2030 and of net zero by 2050
- have at least $1,000,000 in eligible expenditure.
Your project must be delivered in one of the following locations:
- on-site at any eligible facility, or
- shared infrastructure, with practical connection to an eligible facility and the grantee, located in Regional Australia (defined as any area outside a Greater Capital City but including Kwinana)
You can apply for a grant between $500,000 and $50,000,000.
You can use this grant funding for:
- newly purchased or pre-existing plant and equipment.
- hired/leased plant
- constructed plant
- labour expenditure and on-costs
- contract expenditure
- staff training that directly supports the achievement of project outcomes
- decommissioning old equipment
To be eligible, expenditure must:
- be incurred by you within the project period
- be a direct cost of the project
- be incurred by you to undertake required project audit activities (where applicable)
- meet the eligible expenditure guidelines.