Solar pricing needs to be consistent

19th Jun 2012

A consistent approach to solar pricing across all Australian states and territories would be warmly welcomed by the solar industry, according to the Australian Solar Energy Society (AuSES).

AuSES chief executive John Grimes says that with so many different solar schemes and support systems in place across the country, it might be time to streamline the process by establishing a single national fair price for solar.

"Australia's solar industry would welcome a consistent national approach to solar and clean energy programs," he explained in a statement.

John added: "The solar industry has been hamstrung by different support schemes in different states and territories, administered independently and not co-ordinated with the Australian government."

At the moment, he argued, "too many Australians" are not receiving a fair price for the renewable electricity they generate via rooftop solar PV panels.

For example, he explained that a Sydney household is currently paid six cents per kilowatt hour of electricity they generate – but the same household would be expected to pay 25 to 29 cents per kilowatt hour to purchase electricity from a major utility supplier.

According to John, the maths don't add up.

"You can sell your electricity to the big power company for six cents, and then the power company sells it to your neighbour for 29 cents – a tidy windfall profit estimated at $33 million per annum in New South Wales alone.

The solution, he explained, is a uniform price for solar energy that would see Australian households with solar panels paid at the same rate as they have to pay to use electricity generated at coal-fired power stations.

An effective approach, John explained, would also be fairer on Australian families and businesses that want to sell the power that they generate from solar panels back into the grid.

And as governments right across the country agreed to the National Principles for Feed-in Tariff Schemes back in 2008, John says "it's about time" this was established as a nation-wide solar pricing scheme.

Earlier this year, John explained that the failure of Australian electricity companies to adequately maintain their infrastructure or make timely upgrades are now facing aging facilities in need of repairs that could total $100 billion.

This, he explained, is the primary reason behind recent electricity price hikes – but solar could have an essential role to play in postponing or cutting down this major investment.

All solar power news categories

Government Rebate & Regulations
Solar Power & Technology

More Solar Power & Technology

Australia to be a part of huge Asian renewable energy growth
SunPower steps up to make solar more affordable
Canberra makes strides toward carbon neutrality
GTM puts solar's massive growth in perspective
Examining Australia's falling solar PV rooftop prices
Australia's shift toward renewable energy picks up the pace
Australia shines at solar decathlon
University of Queensland tapped as lead researcher on massive solar project
100 per cent renewable energy is possible in 10 years, environmental group says
Climate Commission releases report on solar progress
Aussie government actually shows spine for solar power
Be gone, skeptics: One million solar installations and counting
Australia embarks on its greatest solar journey ever
Australia looks to solar thermal for commercial success
Solar power helps King Island reach 100% sustainability
Australians 'heavy supporters of solar power'
Mildura solar plant officially unveiled
Solar power trumps other renewables in Australian minds
Sunshine Coast solar farm "fantastic initiative"
Sunshine Coast cashes in on namesake with solar plans
Energy storage 'could maximise solar power utility'
Solar powered family car - a world first?
Code of conduct for solar installers in the works
'Stop punishing households' for solar PV
Australian solar companies 'adjusting well'
Australian mining 'next solar frontier'
"Rooftop revolution" underway across Australia
Global PV market emerging from sluggish period
Royalla solar farm receives final approval
Leadership challenge a "debacle" for Australian solar power
Solar power giving global renewables a helping hand
Australia's largest CPV solar power plant up and running
Renewable energy misinformation "staggering"
CEC: Don't underestimate consumer desire for solar
Setting energy efficient examples on TV
Solar PV brightening up household bills
World's largest solar powered boat on the move
Climate change is heating up
The global solar power shift
New solar tech win for NSW
Industry orgs praise City of Sydney solar efforts
Clean Energy Council supports Regional Renewables scheme
Asian nations emerging as PV leaders
Solar PV demand continues to grow
Regional areas of Australia to receive more renewables
Australia's significant renewable energy growth
Solar panel reprieve for Queensland
New funding for solar research
Find love with sustainable speed dating
New Victorian solar power deal
 To get your quotes, please enter your postcode: