FRIDAY 27 JULY, 2012 |
UPDATE: Victoria Solar Feed In Tariff Review
Last updated 3pm Friday 27th July
The Victorian Competition and Efficiency Commission (VCEC) review of the state's
solar feed in tariff, currently Australia's most
generous, was submitted to the Victorian Treasurer a short time ago.
According to a statement from the VCEC:
"The Commission is required to provide a final report to the Victorian
Treasurer. The Government then chooses when it will release the report. The
Order-in-Council which established the Commission specifies that the Treasurer
should publicly release the final report, and the Government's response, within
"Within six months" means changes to the program could be announced at any time
from this point on. At the time of writing, the Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance web site gives no specifics as to when the report will be made available to the public or when any changes may be announced.
The VCEC says it "is unable to provide information or advice on current or future FiT arrangements"; however, a draft VCEC recommendation in May suggested only a 6 - 8c per kilowatt hour
benefit for new applicants, plus whatever additional rate solar households are
able negotiate with their electricity retailer.
A guaranteed 6 - 8c credit or payment for surplus solar electricity generated,
if part of the final recommendation and implemented, would be far less than what
is available to households acquiring
a system now
(25c per kilowatt hour + up to 8c electricity retailer
Eligible households signing up the current Transitional
(TFiT) program before any changes come into effect will
receive the guaranteed rate until the end of 2016.
Another trigger that could end the TFIT program for new applicants with little
or no warning relates to a 75MW cap for the program; a quota that may be very
close to being reached.
Victorians considering going solar should note there have been instances in the
past where solar incentives in Australia have been subject to "sudden
death" announcements; providing little or no notice of changes. Even
when notice is given, many choose to leave acquiring a solar power system until
the last minute; causing a rush that results in some missing out as solar
providers become overwhelmed with enquiries.
With Victorians enduring two major electricity price hikes in the past 12
months, the case for making the switch to solar has grown stronger. By the end
of March, approximately 128,013 solar panel systems were installed in the state.
A good quality entry-level 1.52kW solar power system installed
can generate electricity bill savings of up to $600 a year
under current feed in incentive arrangements. A 3kW solar array can provide in
the region of $1,140 in financial benefits annually and a 5kW system
approximately $1,900 in savings a year.
wanting to secure a system ahead of any possible changes should call the
company's solar hotline on 1300 727 151 for further information.
and Victoria Solar Power Specials.
Return to main renewable energy news section
Other Energy Matters News Services