The ACCC is a powerful body created to protect consumers in Australia. Now, after ten years of poor people being forced to pay for middle and upper class solar panels in a kind of semi-secret subsidy-tax, NOW, it says maybe it is time to stop?
Ben Packham, Sam Buckingham-Jones, The Australian
The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s electricity affordability report reveals the huge cost of environmental schemes across the National Energy Market, including the large-scale renewable energy target, the small-scale renewable energy scheme and solar feed-in tariffs.
The schemes add a combined $170 to household energy bills in South Australia, $155 in Tasmania, $109 in NSW, $93 in Victoria and $76 in Queensland.
The ACCC waffles some reasons:
The ACCC said the costs associated with the LRET were expected to fall significantly after 2020, and did not recommend any action to wind up the scheme before its 2030 end date. But it said the SRES, which cost $130 million in 2016-17, should be wound down and abolished by 2021, almost a decade ahead of schedule, to reduce costs for consumers.
When did the ACCC ask what value non-solar customers were getting from this deal?
Solar installers must be starting to panic….
Western Sydney Solar owner Rod Grono said he was worried that abolishing the rooftop solar subsidy would lead to a plunge in solar installations.
And the truth about the return on investment becomes clearer:
“Confidence will fall. For a $10,000, 5.2kW job, (small-scale technology certificates) are about $3300. That means a four-year payback becomes a seven or eight-year payback. That might tip people over,” Mr Grono said.
Solar is competitive if you give it a one third head start:
Modelling suggested the SRES would fund about 32 per cent of the cost of a 5kW system by 202
I’ll have a lot more to say on this. Sadly am crook. Thanks to TDeF, Robber, ROM for help. Watch this space….
*Why is the burden on non solar homes? Because some with solar panels got paid above market rates for green electrons, and other solar homes got the use of subsidized equipment so they just didn’t have to buy so much electricity.