Rebates & Incentives
There are currently various schemes running to help with the cost of installing a solar power system in Queensland, and also with the money paid back to you for selling your excess generated electricity back to the grid.
STC’s (Small Scale Technology Certificates)
Solar panel systems are entitled to a number of small-scale technology certificates (STCs) if the system is eligible. This is based on the amount of electricity in megawatt hours (MWh) the system generates over the course of its lifetime; this is generally based on 15 years, but in real life expects a system to generate well in excess of a 15 year life time frame.
So depending on the size of the system you have installed, you are entitled to a number of STC’s, For example a 3kw system attracts 62 STC’s and a 5kw system will attract 103 STC’s.
STC’s are worth a certain dollar value depending on the market, see below for graph outlining STC pricing over the last financial year.
As a customer you are entitled to keep these certificates but pay a higher price for a solar system, or you can do what most people do and use the certificates to reduce the price of the system by signing them over upon installation. This is the most popular option, as there are registration costs and other fees involved in selling or trading STC’s which can be a headache for someone not involved in the industry.
It’s important to make sure you are being paid a fair amount for your STC’s as there has been some dishonesty in the industry where companies have offered customers a fraction of what they’re worth. A quick search on google will give you a market price, but keep in mind the market price is based on parcels of 5000 or more certificates, so if you deduct $1.50 – $2.00 this should be approx what you will receive.
For a system to be eligible for STC’s it has to be installed to Clean Energy Council regulations, things to keep in mind are: Is the electrician Clean Energy Council accredited? Are the solar products certified for Australia? Will the right electrical components been used? Is the inverter no smaller than 75% of the total array’s (panels) output? All this is factored in to determine whether a solar system is eligible for STC’s.
Many electricity retailers pay eligible customers for the surplus electricity generated from solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, which is exported back into to the Queensland electricity grid.
There is no mandated rate for customers in South East Queensland. Instead, you must approach your electricity retailer to obtain a market feed-in tariff rate per kilowatt hour for their exported electricity.
Recently the following energy providers are paying the following:
- Click Energy 10c per kw hour.
- AGL 8c per kw hour.
- Origin 6c per kw hour.
Commercial Solar Power for Businesses
Whichever industry your business operates in, there are some great incentives for switching your business to solar power, including tax breaks for companies with a turnover of less than $2 million a year, an immediate write off of assets, including solar arrays, to the value of $6,500 is available. More information on Commercial Solar Installations here.