The market for commercial-scale rooftop solar is facing oblivion in Australia if the government implements controversial proposals put forward by RET Review panel it appointed.
Installers and analysts says the cocktail of measures put forward by the Warburton review will bring Ausralia’s fastest growing solar market to an effective halt.
The commercial scale solar market – between 10kW and 100kW – was slow to take off in Australia, but has been accounting for around 20 per cent of new installations in recent months as businesses recognise the cost savings available.
However, the industry says this market will evaporate if the government accepts the review recommendations to end incentives for small scale solar immediately, or lowers the eligibility for those certificates from 100kW to 10kW.
“This will decimate the Australian commercial solar sector, and put us back to the stone ages,” said Jeremy Rich, from solar firm Energy Matters. This, as the rest of the world continues to adopt commercial solar solutions at a rapid pace, helping their counties to reduce their dependance on fossil fuels.
“Renewable energy is only going down in cost, whilst fossil fuels will continue to rise in cost. This change to the Renewable Energy Target if actually adopted in Australia will make Australia business uncompetitive going forward,” he said.
“Our elecricity bill costs will continue to rise whilst USA, China, Japan, etc adopt solar energy at a rapid pace enabling their industries to shield themselves from rising electricity bills.”
“The commercial sector was a big growth area for the industry, taking about 20 per cent of the capacity in recent months because businesses were looking to install solar systems to reduce costs.”
He also said such a move to reduce the eligibility could raise safety issues, as such systems would no longer be regulated under th SRES scheme – and encourage installers to use cheap and poor quality products.