–Update 22 August 2011: the WA solar feed-in tariff scheme has closed. For regularly-updated list of state-by-state feed-in tariffs, please visit out solar power feed-in tariff page or contact a Solar Choice broker on 1300 78 72 73 for advice about incentives and a list of solar power quotes from installers in your area. You can also request a free comparison of solar quotes by filling out our quote comparison request form.-
The Western Australian government recently announced the implementation of a net Feed-in Tariff (FiT) to encourage the expansion of residential renewable energy systems. This new scheme is set to commence on 1 August 2010 with a premium FiT rate of 40 cents per Kilowatt-hour over the next ten years.
This will be complementary to the 7 cents currently paid under the Renewable Energy Buyback Scheme, meaning that solar customers will receive a total of 47 cents for each unit of electricity that they export to the grid. In addition to the Federal Government’s Solar Credit Scheme”which helps to reduce up-front costs”the FiT makes solar energy more attractive and affordable than ever. Depending on your system size and your energy needs, you may even receive a cheque from your energy provider along with your regular statements. The Western Australian FiT is similar to schemes currently in operation in Queensland, Victoria, and South Australia.
The net FiT encourages energy efficiency in the household and rewards customers by paying the premium rate every time energy generation exceeds energy consumption. This is calculated at half-hourly intervals. In households with low daytime energy consumption”for example, when parents are at work and children at school”electricity generation may exceed demand, resulting in net electricity being exported to the grid. Even when residents are at home during peak sunlight hours, there are ways to minimize energy consumption, and thus maximize benefits of the FiT scheme. Larger systems may also generate more electricity for export. In general, under a net Feed-in Tariff, it is better to use your dishwasher, washing machine or other high-energy appliances at night, allowing your system to export more electricity during sunlight hours.
The WA FiT is currently available only to residential customers, and is limited to systems of 5kW for Synergy customers, and 10 kW per phase for Horizon customers.
For more helpful tips and information, see our articles:
For a good comparison of system sizing and the financial benefits under a net FiT, see:
Written by John Yurasek
Solar Energy Consultant
© 2010 Solar Choice Pty Ltd
Source: WA Office of Energy 2010.