The Australian Capital Territory government released the detailes of its feed-in tariff (FiT) for large-scale and commercial solar power systems. Feed-in Tariff rates will be determined by an innovative reverse-auction process. The program will complement a suite of policy measures designed to transform the Territory’s energy infrastructure and usage future.
Reverse auctions to determine FiT rates for large-scale solar
The ACT’s large-scale FiT is an Australian first–no other state or territory has yet introduced such incentives for commercial-scale projects. The Electricity Feed In (Large Scale Renewable Energy Generation) Bill 2011, which establishes the framework for the ‘reverse auction’ Feed-in Tariff, was tabled in Canberra’s Legislative Assembly on 17 November 2011, and is expected to become law by the end of 2011. In a reverse auction process, companies must provide detailed proposals to the ACT government about how they can generate the greatest amount of renewable energy at the least price. Proposals will be evaluated for feasibility and cost-effectiveness.
210MW, released in instalments–1st 2 projects, 40MW by the end of 2011
The scheme will ensure that a feed-in tariff is paid for up to 210 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy capacity in the territory. The 210MW of capacity will be released in instalments, with the first 40MW being dedicated to large-scale solar technologies and released for auction before the end of 2011. This 40MW alone will provide enough energy to power 7000 homes, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 850,000 tonnes over the lifespan of the project, and providing a minimum of 14% of Canberra’s electricity demand.
“The first auction process is expected to get underway before the end of the year, and a comprehensive information package will be provided to industry at that time,” Minister for the Environment & Sustainable Development Simon Corbell said in a press release. “The scheme will complement upcoming government programs that will support low income households adress energy price increases and takes the first serious steps towards achieving the ambitious greenhouse gas reductions the Territory set for itself last year.”
The ACT large-scale feed-in tariff scheme became law on 9 Dec 2011.
© 2011 Solar Choice Pty Ltd
He is now the communications manager for energy technology startup SwitchDin, but remains an occasional contributor to the Solar Choice blog.
James lives in Newcastle in a house with a weird solar system.
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