TUESDAY 19 JUNE, 2012 |
AuSES Calls For National 'Same Price for Solar Power'
After suggestions a Coalition Government will take a national approach to
managing clean energy, AuSES has called on it to also back a national solar feed
in tariff scheme where system owners are paid fair value for the solar
electricity they export to the mains grid.
"Australiaís solar industry would welcome a consistent national approach to solar and clean energy
programs," said John Grimes, the Chief Executive of the Australian Solar Energy Society.
"The solar industry has been hamstrung by different support schemes in different States and Territories, administered independently and not coordinated with the Australian
Queensland still offers a generous feed
rate for new connections of 44c kilowatt hour, but other states
offer far less. Given continuing electricity price hikes, solar power systems
represent a good investment regardless of feed in tariff rates; but hostile
policies discourage uptake, extend reliance on fossil-fuel generation and
further the status quo of centralised power generation.
"Too many Australians arenít paid a fair price for their solar power. In Sydney today you can generate your own solar electricity and be paid just 6 cents kWh, but you have to pay 25 to 29c/kWh cents to buy electricity from the big power
companies," said Mr. Grimes.
The current situation in New South Wales is particularly profitable for power
companies, estimated by AuSES at $33 million annually. Not only is the surplus
electricity contributed by solar households in the state resold to others at the
standard market rate, but often with a GreenPower premium attached.†
Additionally, the electricity
generated by solar panels
is created during peak periods when the wholesale
cost of electricity
is at its highest, sometimes costing utilities tens of
dollars per kilowatt hour from other sources. Taking peak period costs into
consideration, the windfall for electricity companies may be far higher than the
$33 million dollars estimated by AuSES.
Other news for Tuesday 19 June, 2012
Return to main renewable energy news section
Other Energy Matters News Services