Solar plan switched on
THE Queensland Government has a goal to have a million homes in Queensland with solar panels.
Energy Minister Mark Bailey also confirmed at the Solar 2015 conference in Melbourne that the Government is committed to generating 50 per cent of the State’s energy from renewables by the year 2030.
To achieve these goals, the Queensland Government is urging the public to consider Solar Power Purchase Agreements ( SPPAs), which have been popular in countries such as the US and now Australia.
An SPPA is when a customer has a solar system installed on their roof for $ 0 and locks in a low- cost contract with their solar/ energy company to purchase the electricity the solar system creates. The solar system is then monitored and maintained by the energy company.
The contracts vary in length from seven to 15 years.
SPPAs are not for everybody, but with modifications and the use of smart timers and small lifestyle changes, customers can achieve significant savings.
For example, timers can be used to maximise appliances such as hot- water systems and pool pumps to operate while solar systems are working to achieve great results. Customers can also program dishwashers, washing machines and dryers to operate during daylights hours and to finish in time for when you get home from work.
SPPAs are going to be a game- changer for customers who may not be able to afford a solar system outright. For many customers, SPPAs are going to achieve similar savings to those with solar systems. They are also popular for business owners, who can achieve large savings in energy costs without having to spend capital on a solar system, in fact up to 60 per cent of their power bill. Business owners can put capital towards growing their business in other areas.
For some customers, you will be able to lock in rates as low as 12 to 16 cents a kWh during daylight hours. Currently, home and business owners are paying anywhere between 25 to 45 cents a kWh for daytime electricity. The savings are significant. JOHN HORAN, Idalia.
CONTRACT: Solar Power Purchase Agreements are catching on in Australia.