Why Solar Feed-In Tariffs Are Likely To Fall Within 3 Years

Crystal ball

Ronald’s crystal ball says: “The future may bring lower feed in tariffs if wholesale electricity prices tumble.”

Increasing renewables will reduce wholesale electricity prices. Unfortunately that means feed in tariffs will probably fall too.

Solar feed-in tariffs – the payment households receive for surplus solar electricity they send into the grid – are likely to fall within the next three years along with wholesale electricity prices.

The bad news: a fall in both feed-in tariffs and grid electricity prices will reduce the returns from rooftop solar. [Read more…]

A Fair Solar Feed-In Tariff For Australia Is Around 22 Cents

 

Solar Feed-In Tariffs Should Be Higher Than They Are — But Not As High As Some Believe

In my not at all humble opinion, Australian solar feed-in tariffs are too damn low!  People aren’t receiving a fair deal for the clean solar energy they export to the grid.  This is bad for our nation and the world because with a fairer price we would see more rooftop solar installed which would reduce the damage to our health and our environment from burning fossil fuels.

But before I am voted leader of the revolution for higher feed-in tariffs and march my armies on Canberra — or maybe somewhere that’s actually nice to go — I should point out that, unlike some people, I don’t think solar feed-in tariffs should equal the retail cost of electricity.  While feed-in tariffs  should be higher than they are now, a “fair” price is likely to still be less than what most of us are are normally charged for grid electricity.

As a result, this article will probably end up a successful attempt at making the maximum number of people possible disagree with me. [Read more…]

Is Your Electricity Retailer Ripping You Off On Solar Feed-In Tariffs?

pick pocket

I’m getting reports that some electricity retailers are refusing to honour the full feed-in-tariff. In my opinion, that is theft.

Let Me Know If Your Electricity Retailer Is Cheating You Out Of Your Solar Feed-In Tariff… [Read more…]

How To Use a Fronius Smart Meter To Solar Power Your Hot Water

fronius hot water diversion

Note to installers: Don’t wire directly in to bathtub or the duck will die.

Over the past week or so I’ve been politely prodded  by a plethora of people pushing me to provide information pertaining to solar hot water diverters.

A ‘hot water diverter’ is a box of power electronics that that sucks up your homes’ surplus solar electricity and diverts it to an electric hot water system instead of exporting it to the grid where it would earn a feed-in-tariff.  If the whole system is well designed and installed it will  greatly reduce or even eliminate using grid electricity for water heating. [Read more…]

What Does The Reduced STC Price Mean For Solar?

Solar salesperson

STC prices dropping means solar prices have risen. What has that done to solar payback times?

We were warned.

We all knew this was coming.

But who among us was prepared for the recent tumble in the price of STCs that lower the cost of rooftop solar?

Well, I was. [Read more…]

When Electricity Price Hikes Don’t Improve The Economics Of Batteries

batteries and bills

Do rising electricity prices always improve the economics of batteries? No. Read on to discover why. (And don’t stand on your roof without wearing an approved safety harness – especially if you are balancing giant golden scales on your head.)

I’ve already written on how electricity prices are set to rise substantially.

Because Australians will soon have to shell out like an evicted hermit crab when it comes to grid power, both the good and bad mainstream media are declaring that rising power costs make buying batteries more attractive.

Unfortunately for fans of shock boxes this is unlikely to be the case. Counter-intuitive I know. But bear with me. [Read more…]

NSW Feed In Tariff Changes – Channel 9 Adds To The Confusion

Last night Channel Nine News in Sydney ran a short segment on how NSW’s high gross solar feed-in tariffs are ending in a few days time.

Many of the details in this segment were not correct. [Read more…]

Standard Tariffs Vs Time Of Use Pricing. Which Goes Best With Solar?

time of use meter

What will give you the lowest bill, a standard or time of use tariff? What if you add solar? What about batteries?

Australians pay for grid electricity in two ways.  The most common way is a standard tariff. But you can also choose a time-of-use tariff.

What is a standard tariff?

This is where you pay a fixed rate for each kilowatt-hour used, plus a hefty supply charge.  Australians have been paying for electricity this way since the the electricity meter, invented in 1888, was developed into the ‘spinning dial’ type in 1914. So Australians have been using standard tariffs for over  a century. [Read more…]

How To Keep Your Bills Down When The NSW 60c Feed-In Tariff Ends

new gross meter

If you are on the 60c Feed In Tariff in NSW (AKA the Solar Bonus Scheme) you really need to get a new meter by January 1.

Across NSW there are 146,000 homes and businesses receiving a gross feed-in tariff for the electricity their rooftop solar generates.

This tariff ends on the 31st of December 2016.

If those 146,000 homes and businesses don’t get new import/export meters installed by the end of the year, their owners (or tenants) will be in the financially painful position of not just losing their generous 60-66c feed-in tariff, but also receiving nothing for the solar electricity they export into the grid.

At the start of this year there was a lot of confusion about just what people would have to do to get new meters installed. It became clear there were not enough specialist metering electricians in the state to get the job done – even if they worked on nothing else for the rest of the year.  Fortunately, the rules have been changed and the pool of people permitted to replace meters is expanding. [Read more…]

How To Find Solar Friendly Electricity Tariffs By Hacking Government Data

data hack

Learn how to hack the government’s electricity bill data for fun and profit…

If you own a solar system but haven’t shopped around the electricity retailers in a while, your bills are probably higher than they need to be.

The big gentailers, Origin, AGL and Energy Australia have made their disdain for solar very clear. They all lobbied to scrap government support for small scale solar during Tony Abbott’s RET review in 2014. And unsurprisingly their electricity tariff offers for solar owners are pretty ordinary.

Luckily there are lots of smaller retailers around these days that often beat the big names. And a handful of those offer solar Feed In Rates that are higher than the rates mandated by your state government. [Read more…]