WEDNESDAY 22 MAY, 2013 |
Commercial Solar Electricity 'Cheaper Than Buying From The Grid'
Some Australian businesses installing commercial scale solar power
systems can now source electricity cheaper than from the mains grid.
According to an article on The
, the economics of solar have improved so much in recent years,
commercial solar is being installed without major subsidies.
Quoting figures from AGL, The Australian states the number of commercial scale
solar installations has jumped from 550 in the first four months in 2012 to
1,460 in the same period this year.
The reason for the jump isn't so much to do with the environmental aspect, which
can have benefits in terms of customer perception; but more to do with bottom
"The cost of buying solar is now cheaper than buying from the grid, even
with zero subsidies," says UBS utilities analyst David Leitch.
Australian commercial solar installer Energy
says if businesses are paying more than 20c/kWh for daytime
electricity consumption, a system sized to generate equivalent to that
consumption will provide a payback time of between 5 and 7 years; "after
which time, the electricity you generate is essentially free".
Also a significant player in the residential solar sector, Energy Matters'
commercial arm installs systems for businesses, schools and community
organisations across Australia from 20 kilowatts to 1 megawatt capacity.
Energy Matters recently announced it was commencing work on a 290kW
solar power system
for foodservice giant Bidvest; which will be one of the
largest purely privately funded solar installations in Australia.
Commercial scale solar arrays still represent a significant capital investment,
"so it is important to know what you are buying and from whom," says
Energy Matters; which offers a free
commercial solar guide
to assist businesses discern value-for-money
proposals from sales spin.
"Undertaking research and asking the right questions will help businesses
make the best investment decision and maximise the benefits of a commercial
solar array for decades to come."
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