The Solar Credits program is part of Australia’s Renewable Energy Target.
NEWSFLASH! Solar Credits subsidy reduction on the horizon – learn more here.
Under this initiative, every megawatt hour of renewable energy generation is eligible to produce renewable energy certificates (RECs); also known as STC’s. This means when a solar system is installed it is eligible to not only access the value of the energy it produces, but also the value of the RECs/STCs representing 15 years of generating capacity or to 2030 (whichever comes first) – a process known as deeming.
The value of a REC/STC is created by the Federal Government placing a mandate on our electricity retailers and large energy users (known as compliant parties). To meet this mandated commitment, they must invest in renewable energy project directly, or go to the market and purchase RECs/STCs in order to meet their commitment. The market price for RECs/STCs is created by the Government establishing a penalty for not achieving the mandated target. Rather than pay a penalty the energy retailers can purchase RECs/STCs from homeowners installing solar systems.
So, by purchasing a solar system you can supply RECs/STCs to help Australia achieve it commitment to renewables.
When you purchase a solar system from Energy Matters, we have already discounted this value for you in your solar quote. On the day of installation you will assign the RECs/STCs over to us and we will then complete the registration of these certificates with the Renewable Energy Regulator on your behalf. On a 3kW system, this value can represent more than $2000 of available subsidy.
Solar Credits Scheme FAQ
The following are some commonly asked questions and answers regarding the new solar credit program.
Is this really a rebate?
The program is commonly referred to as the Solar Credits rebate, but in effect it is a subsidy offering up-front discount on the purchase of a solar power system.
Who is the solar panel credits program open to?
Home owners, small businesses and community groups are all eligible for the Australian solar credits program! No-one is means tested under the new solar scheme. The scheme also covers off grid installations. Schools are also eligible for the Solar Credits scheme.
Does it cover remote power systems?
Does it cover energy storage?
Yes, you can buy a battery system as part of a solar package and still receive the subsidy
What size system should I buy to achieve the maximum rebate?
Since the phasing out of the Solar Credits multiplier for systems installed after December 31, 2012; size is no longer relevant in terms of level of support for both grid connect and off grid systems.
The Solar Credits rebates levels are based on three elements – zoning, REC values and the deeming period.
Australia is divided up into various zones based on how much renewable energy can be generated by a solar panel in a given area. You can determine your zone using this table (PDF), or by using the following interactive application.
Note: this REC zone map is a guide only and may not be entirely accurate. For accurate zone details, check your postcode using this table (PDF)
Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) accompany qualifying solar power equipment. These certificates can be traded in for cash or as a point of sale discount with companies such as Energy Matters. Their values are controlled by market forces; meaning they can fluctuate up and down continuously.
As an example, under the solar credits scheme if you buy a 1.5kW system in Victoria (Zone 4) installed after December 31, 2012 and before the end of 2016, you’ll receive:
26 RECs x $30*/REC = $780 subsidy
A breakdown on different zones (1.5kW systems – all figures approximate):
Zone 1 subsidy = $1,080 (@ $30*/REC)
Zone 2 subsidy = $1,020 (@ $30*/REC)
Zone 3 subsidy = $930 (@ $30*/REC)
Zone 4 subsidy = $780 (@ $30*/REC)
Note: a GST paying customer (any business or tax paying entity that is not a final consumer) will need to provide us with a tax invoice for the value of the RECs plus GST prior to the installation taking place. This will allow us to subtract the value of the RECs from the point of sale amount of the system.
* Estimated value only – REC values fluctuate due to market conditions.
* IMPORTANT : After 2016, the subsidy will reduce – learn more here.
If you’re interested in installing solar power at your home – view our current specials and contact our team 133-SUN.
Have you tried our solar power instant online quoting system yet? By entering a few details, you can design your dream grid connect solar power system and have a full estimate emailed to you automatically!
Can I install the panels myself to get the full solar credits value?
Does the solar credit program also apply to wind power?
Yes it does – the same guidelines will apply for wind turbine installations – even for micro-hydro systems!
What about caravans, boats, sheds, motorhomes and RV’s?
As long as the caravan, boat, shed or RV has an address and is your principle place of residence and has an address (such as a caravan park site or marina berth), it will be eligible under the solar credits scheme.
How does the solar panel credits scheme work?
A single REC/STC is equivalent to one megawatt hour of electricity generation. Renewable Energy Certificates are currently issued with qualifying solar hot water, solar energy, wind power systems or solar panels and can be traded for cash. The value of a REC is dependent on market conditions.
How do I cash the REC/STC credits?
Relax 🙂 While the program may seem a little confusing, Energy Matters is here to make things super-easy for you!
While you can claim the cash value of the RECs yourself, that means you’ll need to pay the full price of the solar power system up front and then have the paperwork hassles, followed by the wait.
However, we can offer you a point of sale discount if you assign the credits to Energy Matters as we’re a registered REC agent! We then take care of the rest, saving you a substantial amount in financial outlay and the bother of red tape. Additionally, we offer higher REC values than most, if not all, our competitors!
Need more info or ready to order a system?
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To ensure you can have your system installed sooner rather than later, here’s what you need to do: