Competition and global price cuts on components make it a great time for Australian households to go solar – particularly with electricity prices predicted to jump a national average of 17%.
While solar rebates may have been reduced this year, solar power system prices have been slashed by over 70% in the past 12 months according to the Australian Solar Energy Society (AuSES). The reductions have been largely due to the massive growth of solar in China – and Australian householders are reaping the benefits.
China had little solar capacity as recently as 2009 and while setting a target of 15GW for 2015, it’s expected the nation will achieve 26GW capacity by that time. The massive scaling up of production of solar panels, inverters and related equipment has rapidly reduced prices; with the flow-on effect meaning solar power is now within the reach of more Australian households.
AuSES CEO John Grimes, speaking at the opening of the Solar 2011 Conference in Sydney on Wednesday, stated solar was rapidly approaching grid parity, making residential, commercial and large-scale PV a key player in delivering the future energy needs of Australians.
The 49th annual Australian Solar Energy Society’s (AuSES) conference has brought together leading government officials, scientists, developers and solar industry experts; exchanging new ideas and discussing the latest developments in the area of renewable energy technologies.
Mr Grimes said prior to the conference the event could be one of the most significant ever held in terms of focused debate on policies that support the growth of a sustainable solar energy industry in Australia.
“We need to get this right so it is fair for both household solar, and large-scale and commercial scale solar projects”, he said.
The conference also incorporates the AuSES awards, sponsored by Q-Cells Australia sponsoring (Research Award), Suntech (Wal Read Award) and Vulcan Energy (awards).
Previously known as the Australian New Zealand Solar Energy Society (ANZSES), AuSES is a non-profit organisation promoting scientific, social and economic development through the environmentally sound use of solar energy.