Qld slashes solar tariff
The Queensland Government has slashed the solar feed in tariffs for new household solar systems by 80 percent, arguing that continuing with the current tariff would have cost the state $1.8 billion to 2028.
From July 10, the feed-in rate under Queensland’s Solar Bonus Scheme will be cut from 44c per kilowatt hour to 8c/kWh, with the supplier adding another 16c/kWh.
However, the Newman government said it would honour its election commitment to preserve the entitlements of the 180,000 households that have signed on to install solar panels and sell the electricity they do not use back to the public grid. Solar groups claim the move will spark a two-week frenzy, and then a bleak period which would see the state’s solar industry shed thousands of jobs.
State Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the existing scheme would have cost the equivalent of $54 per household by 2014-15 had it not been closed off, pending a recommendation by the Queensland Competition Authority next year on a “fair and reasonable” feed-in tariff.
Had the 44c/kWh rate been retained for all comers, it would have racked up an annual bill to the state of $1.8 billion by 2028, Mr McArdle said. “We need to act now to minimise what Queensland householders and businesses pay for the solar scheme,” he said.
“This approach will provide certainty for the Queensland solar PV industry, and minimise any short-term impacts on investment and jobs.
“While consumers will still have to weigh up the costs and benefits, the government believes the replacement tariff will still make solar PV systems a viable proposition for many households.”
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