The Clean Energy Regulator recently released a statement noting more than 50 per cent of small-scale technology certificates (STC) are now put forward via solar panel validation (SPV).
Kickstarted in 2018, the program formed on SPVs held the intention of combating installations of solar panels that aren’t on the approved list.
The increase of SPVs has increased over the last few months, and the CER have noted that it is expected this will only continue to trend upwards.
“This increase is driven by more accredited installers and registered agents using SPV to help protect their business and provide their customers with confidence that the product they are receiving is genuine.”
How do SPV applications work?
Using a range of smartphone apps to scan individual serial numbers and the process of checking if the panels are on the approved list, consumers are able to cross-check they are receiving authentic brand arrays that meet Australia’s established standards. This also ensures it comes with an official warranty.
Applications using SPVs as the basis are processed within 24 hours, as long as they meet all necessary criteria that fall under the scheme. Without STC claims attached, a detailed assessment is required, which can often mean the process is drawn out between four and six weeks.
The program has seen a rise in rooftop PV installations across the country, helping consumers access a solution to rising electricity costs.
However, as pointed out by pv magazine, “Amid a debate as to whether the SRES, which is paid on the capacity of the PV system rather than power output – kWp rather than kWh – incentivized volume rather than quality of PV systems, the CER and the renewable energy industry came together to develop SPV to protect the integrity of the subsidy scheme.”
Back when the program launched, the ACCC was attempting to eliminate the SRES scheme by the year 2021. It was expected to be eradicated by 2030 under current policy that noted the program was putting continuous pressure on electricity bills.