Solar Panel Rebate To Be Phased Out From 1st of January 2017

solar rebate ending

The projected solar rebate for a 5kW system in Zone 3 with a $37 STC price.

The solar rebate which currently reduces the cost of rooftop solar in Australia will be phased out with the first reduction starting in less than 8 months on the 1st of January 2017. The rebate will reduce by one fifteenth of its current amount on the first day of each new year until 2030 and will end on the 31st of December that year. At the start of 2017, the rebate of $3,990 that most Australians would receive at the moment for a 5 kilowatt rooftop solar system will fall by around $266 down to $3,724. The phase out encourages Australians to install rooftop solar sooner rather than later. [Read more…]

The changing face of Australian solar as confidence returns

changes ahead sign

The large scale solar industry is really starting to pick up – now Abbott’s gone.

There’s a new spring in the step of investors in big solar as confidence that has been lacking during the Abbott years has been boosted following the Turnbull takeover.

The level of enthusiasm for solar power in Australia — and large-scale projects in particular — has been remarkable. The removal of the anti-renewables team of Abbott and Hockey (let’s call it like it is) hasn’t completely dissipated attempts to dismantle renewable energy in Australia. Witness the indecent rush to approve the Adani mine in Queensland as an indicator of the strength of the fossil fuel lobby.

However the removal of the Abbott administration and replacement with the more urbane, measured and supportive approach of the Turnbull team is paying dividends with the big end of town. [Read more…]

Will solar leasing in Australia offer certainty for homeowners?

solar panels and australian cash

Will your solar purchase be Cheque, Savings or Credit?

Do the benefits of solar leasing in Australia outweigh the traps for young players?

It’s a given that Australians, perhaps more than any other nationality, prefer ownership over leasing or renting. Etched into our history of suspicion of authorities and banks, this is expressed most clearly in “The Great Australian Dream” — to completely own one’s own home or block of land.

This preference to be one’s own master is also true of domestic solar arrays. The preference for homeowners has been to buy their solar panels outright. However this may not be possible for all and new solar leasing models which have become popular overseas are now being introduced into the Australian market. Supporters of the model claim it provides access to solar energy where none was previously available. [Read more…]

RayGen combines solar technologies for bush solar revolution

raygen system

The RayGen System focuses solar onto a novel concentrator. Image (c) Raygen

You get the best renewable energy stories tucked away in the rural press. Proof that solar power innovation in the bush is moving ahead by leaps and bounds. This despite the often backwards policy of our elected representatives.

So it was this week when a bit of digging unearthed the unveiling of a $3.6 million solar power facility in Newbridge in Central Victoria. The plant, developed by renewable research and development company RayGen Resources, combines PV cells with concentrating solar technology. [Read more…]

Are AGL’s New Solar Packages a Trick or a Treat for Aussie Consumers?

mousetrap and solar panel

Are AGL offering a great deal or bait?

Just to prove that energy giants can move with the times like the rest of us, AGL Energy, who only a few months ago described solar household tariffs as a ‘scam‘, has decided roll out a couple of new solar energy products.

One is happening now — a (sort of) solar leasing offer — while the other a promise to offer battery storage by the end of the year.

Similar leasing-style models have been very successful in the USA, and AGL join a long list of companies who have recently rolled out solar finance packages such as Energy Matters, Tindo and Sungevity. The option to pay for the energy produced, rather than the initial cost of the panels removes the hurdle of finding $5-$15k upfront, but cunningly locks the solar owner into a very long term contract with AGL.  [Read more…]

3 Phase Solar Wars : The Menace of Phantom Imports.

soalr wars

May the (electromotive) force be with you!


I’m thinking of writing a screenplay. The movie’s name is “3-Phase Solar Wars : The Phantom Imports”. Here’s the opening scene:

“Quite soon in the future, in a suburb not very far away….


It is a period of civil war. Solar owners, striking from over a million rooftops, have won their first victory against the evil Electricity Empire.


During the battle, these plucky rebel homeowners managed to get their electricity bills down so low that they are on the cusp of destroying an entire electricity retail industry.


But now the Empire’s sinister agents have a plan:


[Read more…]

ARENA: the government renewable energy agency that refuses to go away

ARENA - the gift that keeps on giving.

ARENA – the gift that keeps on giving.

Remember ARENA? The plucky Australian Renewable Energy Agency that has helped many renewable energy ventures and research with seed funding and other support? The ongoing benefits of ARENA include not only financial support but also because their involvement has helped pave the way for research and development in partnership with the private sector.

Wait. Ongoing? Didn’t ARENA get axed by the feds in their anti-renewables Budget cuts zeal a while back?

Well no. At least not yet. For ARENA, to quote an oft-used phrase, is the gift that keeps on giving.

Though the agency has, as you’ve probably heard, been axed by the federal government as part of its thinly-disguised ideological campaign against renewables, it still refuses to roll over and die. [Read more…]

Danny Broad Enters the ARENA

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) announced that commercial manager, Danny Broad, has been appointed by the Australian government to ARENA’s Board. Broad is expected to help ARENA in its efforts using the 2.4 billion dollar mandate to improve competiveness and use of renewable energy in Australia. For more on this story, read the full article here:: Danny Broad appointed to the board of ARENA

Why Labor Need To Hold Firm On The RET

The government’s starting RET offer which reduces the legislated, previously bipartisan, and pre-election commitment of 41,000 gigawatt hours per year of renewable energy down to 27,000 has been turned down by the Labor Party. Why? Not just because of the environment, but because of economics.

By cutting the target almost in half, billions of dollars invested in the creation of solar and wind power generating devices will go to waste, and billions of dollars of investment will not happen. The 100 job losses at a wind turbine component manufacturer in Portland, Vic announced yesterday is just the beginning.  Not to mention that power prices would continue to climb due to expensive fossil fuels picking up the slack.

Abbott and his cronies are trying to destroy a policy they promised not to touch.  Then when Labor won’t co-operate they blame the opposition for the uncertainty that is destroying businesses. Read more about this story here.

Nine in ten look to solar to beat rising electricity bills: report

rising bills

Rising electricity costs are driving more people to consider solar.

An Ernst and Young utilities survey report released this week has highlighted the battle ordinary Australians are having with their rising electricity bills. The study also found over 90 percent of those surveyed would like to switch to solar power. [Read more…]