Rooftop PV frequently meets 1/4 of daytime electricity demand in SA

Rooftop solar PV is currently accounting for around 25 per cent of electricity demand in South Australia, for large parts of the day, new data has shown.

Two graphs, taken from Saturday September 20 and Saturday September 27, show that between 11am and 2pm, around one quarter of SA’s electricity demand was provided by solar panels on the rooftops of homes and businesses.

From 10am-4pm, more than 15 per cent of demand was met by rooftop solar.

According the state’s grid operator, SA Power Networks, the data – although not taken in the height of summer, when more air conditioners would be in use and demand considerably higher – the data illustrates that rooftop PV in the state is improving network stability and helping push peak demand into the early evening.

And it’s not just happening on the weekend, when demand is lower because most office buildings and some manufacturing have closed down. Other graphs suggest rooftop PV can meet one quarter of the state’s electricity demand even during weekdays.

South Australia has one of the highest penetration rates of rooftop solar PV in the world, with 22.6 per cent of dwellings sporting rooftop solar PV as at June 30. It has a total of 555MW in the state.

Rooftop solar and wind energy is expected to account for 40 per cent of South Australia’s electricity demand in 2014/15. The state recently announced it would lift its renewable target to 50 per cent by 2025, although if the Ceres wind farm and the Hornsdale wind farms are built, solar thermal gets a hold and rooftop solar PV continues to be deployed, it may achieve a much higher renewables ratio.

This first graph is from Saturday, September 20:SA solar: Sat, Sept 20 2014This second graph is from Saturday, September 27.

SA solar: Sat Sept 27 2014This one is from Monday, September 22.

SA solar: Monday Sept 22And this next graph is from Tuesday, September 23.

SA solar: Tues 23 Sept 2014

© 2014 Solar Choice Pty Ltd

Giles Parkinson

Giles Parkinson regularly contributes unique content to Solar Choice News. Giles is the founder and editor of clean energy industry news service RenewEconomy. He is a journalist of 30 years experience, a former Business Editor and Deputy Editor of the Financial Review, a columnist for The Bulletin magazine and The Australian, and the founding editor of Climate Spectator.
Giles Parkinson