Australia’s residential battery storage market could be worth $24 billion, with half of all households likely to install batteries to store the output from their solar panels, according to investment bank Morgan Stanely.

The bullish prediction – based on a survey of 1,600 households, and the subsequent release of the new Tesla Powerwall battery storage offering – means around 2.4 million households in the National Electricity Market (all states except WA and Northern Territory and off-grid areas) would install batteries, more than the double the 1.1 million households that already have solar in the NEM.

That, says Morgan Stanley, is likely to impact the incumbent electricity utilities, cutting earnings and forcing asset write-downs.

So much so, the investment bank has slapped a “cautious” tag on its outlook for the industry, suggesting they could be badly hit by lost revenue in coming years.

Morgan Stanley’s conclusions came about from a survey it commissioned from 1,600 households, and the subsequent release of pricing by the new Tesla Powerwall battery storage offering.

The survey – conducted in March before the Tesla release at the end of April – found half of all households had a strong interest in household solar and battery product, with a clear $A10k price point and 10-year pay-back period. Read the full article →

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Solar Choice brokers 30kW rooftop solar system for Bridgestone Earthmover Tyres in Mount Isa, QLD

May 25, 2015
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Solar Choice Commercial has brokered a 30kW solar system for the roof of Bridgestone Earthmover Tyres’ facilities in Mount Isa, Queensland. The system uses 115x 260W Trina Solar panels with 2x SMA inverters (1x 25kW and 1x 5kW) as well as an SMA monitoring system. Bridgestone Earthmover Tyres first approached Solar Choice on the 30th December […]

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Renewables sector employed 7.7 million people globally in 2014: IRENA

May 22, 2015
IRENA Renewables and Jobs

The global renewable energy industry employed 7.7 million people, directly or indirectly, in 2014, according to a report released on Tuesday night by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) – an 18 per cent jump on 2013 figures. According to the report, solar PV was the largest renewable energy employer for the year, with 2.5 million jobs […]

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Jordanian auction achieves record-low large-scale solar prices

May 22, 2015

The cost of large-scale solar has achieved a new low in the Middle East and north Africa region, after the latest round of solar auctions in Jordan confirmed the benchmark price at 6c-8c/kWh (US currency). The second round auction – which is allocating contracts for four projects of 50MW – attracted bids 50 per cent […]

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Australia’s first road-legal solar sports car to hit streets this year

May 21, 2015
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Imagine being able to drive yourself around town without having to pay for an ounce of petrol – but instead getting all the fuel that you need for free from the sky. This is the dream that a dedicated group of UNSW students are turning into a reality following three years of hard (and almost entirely unpaid) work. The resultant car – […]

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Innovative German pilot hybrid project combines solar PV, CHP and battery storage

May 20, 2015
Hybrid solar PV, energy storage, CHP system GE

A German project that combines rooftop solar PV, combined heat and power technology, and battery storage could be adapted and scaled up elsewhere, according to General Electric, one of the project’s partners. The commercial-scale project – launched last week – uses solar and CHP to supply the energy and heat needs of a factory owned […]

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New residential energy storage pilot projects to showcase promise of energy independence

May 19, 2015
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In a sign of the times and an indication of things to come, a total of 22 homes are to be fitted out with emergency backup energy storage systems in a pilot project overseen by Australian energy storage solution wholesaler, 360Storage. The company’s energy storage solutions have already been installed in nearly 1,000 grid-connected homes across the […]

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Perth suburb sets sights on solar-powered future

May 19, 2015

Western Australia’s Wanneroo Council has called for expressions of interest to develop and operate a grid-connected solar farm on local government-owned land in the northern Perth suburb of Neerabup. The solar plant would be part of the Neerabup Energy Precinct, which was established by the Council to meet growing electricity demand in Perth’s expanding northern […]

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Renewable Energy Target deal struck: 33,000GWh with no 2-yearly reviews

May 18, 2015
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The Abbott government and federal Labor have finally struck a bipartisan agreement on Australia’s renewable energy target, with both parties agreeing to slash it from 41,000GWh to 33,000GWh by 2020. The agreement was reached on Monday morning after a reported intervention from the Prime Minister’s office, encouraging the Coalition to backflip on its backflip about the need for ongoing reviews. […]

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Solar Choice brokers 100kW solar array for Doug Hall Poultry in Millmerran, QLD

May 18, 2015
Thumbnail image for Solar Choice brokers 100kW solar array for Doug Hall Poultry in Millmerran, QLD

Solar Choice Commercial has brokered a 100kW ground-mounted solar PV installation for Doug Hall Poultry in Millmerran, Queensland. Doug Hall is one of the largest suppliers of fresh eggs to Woolworths and Coles in Australia. After Doug Hall Poultry selected Solar Choice to manage the tender for its solar project, the Solar Choice Commercial team […]

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Queensland to aim for 50% renewables, 1 million solar homes by 2030

May 15, 2015
Thumbnail image for Queensland to aim for 50% renewables, 1 million solar homes by 2030

Queensland’s Labor government has restated its commitment to generating 50 per cent of its electricity needs from renewable energy by 2030, and to ensure one million homes in state had rooftop solar by 2020. The plans, first outlined in Labor’s pre-election policy release, were confirmed by the state’s new energy minister, Mark Bailey, on the […]

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Is it okay to put my solar panels flat on my roof, or should they be tilted?

May 15, 2015
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Solar panel tilt angle and orientation are two of the most important factors in determining how much electricity your solar panel array will generate. If you live in Australia and have a grid-connected solar system, your solar panels will be installed at the angle and aspect of your roof. In most cases – provided you have […]

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Big solar could make up 40% of new 2020 large-scale renewables target: BNEF

May 14, 2015
BNEF new LRET

Big solar could take up as much as 40 per cent of Australia’s 2020 Renewable Energy Target, even with a much reduced target of 33,000GWh, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The forecast contradicts sector-wide fears that large-scale solar projects would be sidelined by cheaper wind energy projects under the agreed cut in the RET. But […]

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Clean Energy Finance Corp to invest $1b towards solar of all sizes

May 14, 2015

Australia’s solar industry looks set to receive an investment boost, after the Clean Energy Finance Corporation revealed plans to finance more than $1 billion of solar projects in the local market. CEFC chief executive Oliver Yates says the institution – which has a budget of $10 billion over five years but which the Coalition government […]

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RET deal back on hold as Labor walks out over continuation of 2-yearly reviews

May 12, 2015

Even as an agreement appears to be close at hand, talks have again broken down between Labor and the Coalition about the future of Australia’s Renewable Energy Target (RET). Labor walked out on the talks, with opposition Environment Minister Mark Butler saying that his party will not back a RET deal that allows for the […]

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WA government backs off on plans for higher fixed charges for solar homes

May 12, 2015
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The Western Australian government has reportedly shelved plans to introduce higher network fixed charges to recoup some of the revenue displaced by the state’s 175,000 solar households. As reported in RenewEconomy in March, WA had been pushing to overhaul electricity tariffs so that households – and particularly those with rooftop solar – paid significantly more […]

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Tesla’s Elon Musk says Powerwall already economically viable in Australia

May 11, 2015
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US electric vehicle and battery maker, Tesla, has declared energy storage already economically viable in Australia, as the upstart company’s founder and CEO Elon Musk provided more insight into why his new Powerwall product was likely to be a major hit. In a briefing to analysts earlier this week, Musk also brushed aside estimates from analysts that the […]

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CSIRO scientists commission solar-powered desalination plant for Cyprus

May 11, 2015
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Scientists from Australia’s CSIRO have designed and installed a solar thermal power plant with molten salt storage on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. The small, 150kW facility is being used to drive a desalination plant, but will also be used to test the CSIRO technology and explore further international opportunities. The project is a joint […]

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Tesla Energy launch shakes up the energy industry

May 11, 2015
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The recent launch of Tesla Energy and the Powerwall lithium battery banks have triggered much excitement in the energy industry. The news has renewable energy supporters optimistic about a speedy transition towards a low carbon economy. The company has release three separate units: (i) a 7kWh daily-use unit ideally partnered with solar PV systems; (ii) […]

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Coalition and Labor to compromise on Renewable Energy Target: 33,000GWh by 2020

May 8, 2015
Thumbnail image for Coalition and Labor to compromise on Renewable Energy Target: 33,000GWh by 2020

A compromise deal may finally have been reached on Australia’s Renewable Energy Target (RET), according to reporting from the ABC and other sources. The Coalition government and Labor Party have apparently reached an agreement to reduce the nation’s 2020 target from the current 41,000 gigawawatt-hours (GWh) to 33,000GWh. Although not the outcome that renewable energy […]

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Commercial Solar PV Price Index: May 2015

May 7, 2015
Thumbnail image for Commercial Solar PV Price Index: May 2015

With the exception of 10kW solar systems, prices for commercial-scale solar PV systems in Australia decreased slightly on average between April and May of 2015, according to data from the Solar Choice installer network database. All prices are net, incorporating incentives available through the federal Renewable Energy Target as well as GST. STCs accounted for […]

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