From the category archives:

Solar and Renewable Energy Policy

Residential Solar PV Price Index – March 2017

March 22, 2017
Thumbnail image for Residential Solar PV Price Index – March 2017

Average residential solar PV system prices in Australia crept down to $1.58 per watt ($1.58/W) from $1.60 in February, according to data from Solar Choice’s installer network database. Although so slight as to be inconsequential, the drop represents a new low, with $1.59/W (in Sept 2016 and Dec 2015) being the next lowest since we […]

Read the full article →

Can you go solar with a south-facing roof in Australia?

March 21, 2017
South-facing roofs okay for solar?

Anyone who has looked into installing solar panels in Australia would have quickly learned that north is the best direction for solar panels. If north is not an option, northwest and northeast are generally the next best options, usually followed by due west and due east, depending on the circumstances. But what about south-facing roofs […]

Read the full article →

The ACT’s home battery storage incentive program

March 21, 2017
ACT NextGen battery storage

The ACT government’s Next Generation Energy Storage (NextGen) program is one of the most ambitious battery storage incentive schemes in Australia, aiming to subsidise the installation of batteries for roughly 5,000 homes and small businesses by 2020. How does the incentive work, and how will it benefit households in the Territory? How it works The […]

Read the full article →

Queensland government launches distributed energy trial to benefit most vulnerable customers

March 17, 2017
Thumbnail image for Queensland government launches distributed energy trial to benefit most vulnerable customers

Queensland’s Labor government has launched a distributed energy trial that aims to give the state’s most vulnerable electricity customers – as well as its half a million rental households – access to solar power. The three-pronged trial is part of the government’s plan to deliver up to 6MW of new solar PV on up to […]

Read the full article →

Malcolm Turnbull announces $2 billion on 2GW pumped hydro scheme

March 16, 2017
Thumbnail image for Malcolm Turnbull announces $2 billion on 2GW pumped hydro scheme

Malcolm Turnbull has announced federal government plans to spend $2 billion on a 2GW pumped hydro scheme in New South Wales’ Snowy Mountains, in what could be the most significant intervention in Australia’s energy markets in half a century. The proposal – which is subject to a feasibility study and funding agreements from Snowy Hydro’s […]

Read the full article →

SA to spend $500 million on Australia’s largest battery storage and gas power plant

March 15, 2017
Thumbnail image for SA to spend $500 million on Australia’s largest battery storage and gas power plant

South Australia has announced plans to install the nation’s biggest battery storage installation, as part of a state government response to the series of blackouts and what it says are the failures of the National Electricity Market. The $500 million scheme includes plans for a new battery storage installation of at least 100MW, a new […]

Read the full article →

Tesla founder predicts imminent end of the fossil fuel era

March 14, 2017
Thumbnail image for Tesla founder predicts imminent end of the fossil fuel era

US EV and battery maker Tesla has suggested that the inflection point grid-scale battery storage is not 20 years away – as some politicians and industry groups would argue – but within sight at just 100 days away. That, at least, was the time it would take to Tesla build a 100MW battery storage facility in […]

Read the full article →

What are the best cities for home solar battery storage?

March 9, 2017
Thumbnail image for What are the best cities for home solar battery storage?

Having just published an article on the state of Australia’s battery storage market at the beginning of 2017, we decided we would endeavour to shed a bit more light on payback period differences between each capital city. Which cities have the best conditions for home solar battery storage? We’ve ranked them below (with an explanation of […]

Read the full article →

Solar power in Brisbane: Compare installers & prices

March 6, 2017
Thumbnail image for Solar power in Brisbane: Compare installers & prices

Over 30% of the homes in the Brisbane area have solar panels on their roofs – one of the highest rates of any of Australia’s capital cities. Why have Brisbane residents taken such a shine to solar power? This article take a look and the benefits of going solar for households in Brisbane. Recommend on […]

Read the full article →

Is home solar battery storage worth it in 2017?

March 2, 2017
Thumbnail image for Is home solar battery storage worth it in 2017?

Since 2015 Australians have been talking about home battery storage being on the cusp of financial viability. Are home batteries worth the investment in 2017? We’ve crunched the number for all of Australia’s capital cities to find out. Battery storage & payback periods in Australia Batteries are in high demand thanks to the promise of […]

Read the full article →

Victorian regulator ups solar feed-in tariff to 11.3c/kWh: What it means for solar system owners

March 2, 2017
Thumbnail image for Victorian regulator ups solar feed-in tariff to 11.3c/kWh: What it means for solar system owners

The Victorian government has just made a move unprecedented in recent Australian solar history – they have moved to mandate a higher minimum solar feed-in tariff rate than what was previously on offer. From 1 July 2017, the new mandatory minimum rate for solar fed into the grid will be 11.3c per kilowatt-hour (kWh), up […]

Read the full article →

Commercial Solar PV Price Index for February 2017

February 28, 2017
Thumbnail image for Commercial Solar PV Price Index for February 2017

The average price of commercial-scale solar system installations in Australia dropped to a new all-time low of $1.23 per watt ($/W), according to data from the Solar Choice installer network database. The previous low – which held stead for about 3 months – was $1.25/W. All system sizes included in the index (10kW, 30kW, 50kW […]

Read the full article →

Solar Choice brokers 100kW solar system for Geelong High School

February 21, 2017
Thumbnail image for Solar Choice brokers 100kW solar system for Geelong High School

Solar Choice has brokered the installation of a 100kW solar PV system for Geelong High School, a co-ed public secondary school in East Geelong, Victoria. The school opened in 1910, making it one of Victoria’s oldest state secondary schools. It moved to its current location (385 Ryrie Street, East Geelong) in 1915. Geelong High School originally approached […]

Read the full article →

Gross vs net solar electricity metering

February 21, 2017
Thumbnail image for Gross vs net solar electricity metering

In the past there was an important distinction between net and gross metering for residential solar systems in Australia. These days, however, almost all new systems are installed with a net metering setup. What’s the difference between a gross meter and a net meter, and why does it matter? Gross vs net meters: A debate […]

Read the full article →

Why doesn’t my electricity retailer give me a 15c solar feed-in tariff?

February 20, 2017
Thumbnail image for Why doesn’t my electricity retailer give me a 15c solar feed-in tariff?

Having just updated our article detailing the solar feed-in tariffs on offer in each state and territory, we thought it would be a good time to discuss the realities of solar feed-in tariffs in 2017. We’ll look at two questions: Why don’t retailers offer higher rates? And: Does it matter if feed-in tariff rates are […]

Read the full article →

Does rooftop solar still make sense in 2017?

February 16, 2017
Thumbnail image for Does rooftop solar still make sense in 2017?

Rooftop solar on its own is already affordable enough to be a smart choice for virtually any Australian home with an unshaded roof and some daytime electricity usage. This is true even in the absence of generous, state-backed solar feed-in tariffs and the (slight) reduction of the up-front incentive for solar available through the federal Renewable […]

Read the full article →

Which electricity retailer is giving the best solar feed-in tariff?

February 15, 2017
Thumbnail image for Which electricity retailer is giving the best solar feed-in tariff?

Feed-in tariffs in Australia: How they’ve changed Solar feed-in tariffs are arrangements where a solar system owner is paid for the excess solar energy that they send back into the grid. At one point in time, feed-in tariffs were mandatory in every state in Australia, and the rates they offered were quite generous. Much has changed, however, […]

Read the full article →

Residential Solar PV Price Index – February 2017

February 14, 2017
Thumbnail image for Residential Solar PV Price Index – February 2017

Despite the decrease in the incentive available under the federal Renewable Energy Target that came in effect from last month, average solar PV system prices have moved little, according to our data. Although this month did see a slight reduction in prices (down to $1.60 per watt from $1.62/W in February), this is mainly attributable to changes in […]

Read the full article →

SA minimum retailer feed-in tariff (RFiT) has ended. What should you do?

February 10, 2017
Thumbnail image for SA minimum retailer feed-in tariff (RFiT) has ended. What should you do?

If you live in South Australia and have a solar system on your roof, there is no longer a guaranteed minimum rate for the excess solar that you send into the grid unless you are on the state’s Premium FiT program (which expires in 2028). The Essential Services Commission of South Australia (ESCOSA) made the determination to eliminate the […]

Read the full article →

Looking beyond solar feed-in tariffs: How to pick an electricity retailer

February 8, 2017

When solar system owners shop around for an electricity retailer, the first thing they tend to look at is the solar feed-in tariff rate that the retailer offers. The fact is, however, that solar feed-in tariffs are no longer as important as they once were – so what else should solar system owners look for in […]

Read the full article →

Solar battery storage in Melbourne, Vic: Compare prices & installers

February 5, 2017
Thumbnail image for Solar battery storage in Melbourne, Vic: Compare prices & installers

As prices fall, a growing number of Melbourne households are becoming interested in installing battery storage for solar energy. It is now possible to compare battery storage installers and prices in Melbourne by requesting a Battery Storage Quote Comparison from Solar Choice. What else do Melbourne homeowners need to consider before deciding on an installer and […]

Read the full article →

Malcolm Turnbull lays out his thoughts on renewable energy in his NPC address

February 4, 2017
Thumbnail image for Malcolm Turnbull lays out his thoughts on renewable energy in his NPC address

Australia’s prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, has laid out his thoughts on renewable energy, electricity pricing and supply, as well as on “clean coal” and gas, describing energy as a “defining debate of this parliament” in his National Press Club address on Wednesday. Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet about it Print for later Tell […]

Read the full article →

Victoria’s Labor Government Steps Up on Climate Action

February 1, 2017
Thumbnail image for Victoria’s Labor Government Steps Up on Climate Action

Victoria’s Labor government has upped the ante on climate action, pledging to cut state emissions by up to 20 per cent within three years on the road to its ultimate target of zero net emissions by 2050. Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet about it Print for later Tell a friend Related PostsThe PM […]

Read the full article →

Solar Choice site stats for 2016: Looking back on a stellar year

January 20, 2017
Thumbnail image for Solar Choice site stats for 2016: Looking back on a stellar year

Rooftop solar is the energy of the people in Australia. In less than half a decade, solar panels have gone from being pricey ‘green bling’ to something that any home or business with some unshaded roof space would contemplate as a practical way to save money & bolster energy independence. More than one in ten […]

Read the full article →

5kW solar systems: Pricing, output, and returns

January 17, 2017
Thumbnail image for 5kW solar systems: Pricing, output, and returns

The average solar system size in Australia has grown in recent years to about 5 kilowatts (kW). What are the price ranges, electricity yields (in kilowatt-hours, kWh) and financial returns that a household can expect from a 5kW solar PV system? This article was originally published in 2012 – we’ve recently updated it to reflect […]

Read the full article →

Commercial Solar PV Price Index for January 2017

January 12, 2017
Thumbnail image for Commercial Solar PV Price Index for January 2017

Average commercial solar system prices continue at about $1.25/W for the fourth month in a row, starting off the new year with no eventful news. Commercial solar system prices (10kW-100kW) All prices in the tables below include incentives available through the federal Renewable Energy Target as well as GST, but do not incorporate meter installation fees […]

Read the full article →

Residential Solar PV Price Index – January 2017

January 12, 2017
Thumbnail image for Residential Solar PV Price Index – January 2017

Average solar system prices for the new year continue to hover around $1.62/W, as they have for the past six months or so. Smaller systems (1.5kW – 2kW) continue to be the dearest on a $/W basis, while larger systems (5kW – 10kW) offer the greatest value in terms of peak output capacity. By our […]

Read the full article →

Solar battery storage in Canberra, ACT

January 7, 2017
Thumbnail image for Solar battery storage in Canberra, ACT

Battery storage for residential solar energy is becoming increasingly popular in Australia – including in Canberra, ACT. If you’re a Canberra resident looking to install a battery storage system for your home, what are the main things that you need to consider? Solar Choice has developed a number of large-scale solar projects in the ACT, […]

Read the full article →

Solar power in Sydney, NSW: Compare prices & installers

December 19, 2016
Thumbnail image for Solar power in Sydney, NSW: Compare prices & installers

Sydney is a great place for solar power, and roughly 10-15% of Sydney area homes have solar panels installed on their roofs. This article is an overview of everything you need to know if you’re considering solar power for your Sydney home – including how you can compare system prices and installers who operate in your […]

Read the full article →

Residential Solar PV Price Index – December 2016

December 15, 2016
Thumbnail image for Residential Solar PV Price Index – December 2016

Average solar PV system prices for December sit at roughly $1.62 per watt ($1.62/W). Average system prices in Australia have hovered around this price point since about July of 2016, although there have been some changes on a city-by-city and size-by-size basis. Average solar PV system prices for December 2016 Prices in the table below include […]

Read the full article →

Commercial Solar PV Price Index for December 2016

December 15, 2016
Thumbnail image for Commercial Solar PV Price Index for December 2016

Average commercial solar system prices saw virtually no change betwen November and December, according to data from the Solar Choice database. Prices have hovered around the $1.25 mark since September. Commercial solar system prices (10kW-100kW) All prices in the tables below include incentives available through the federal Renewable Energy Target as well as GST, but do […]

Read the full article →