Graph of the Day: Australia's strongest (and weakest) solar suburbs | RenewEconomy

Graph of the Day: Australia’s strongest (and weakest) solar suburbs

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Which capital city suburbs are leading the rooftop solar revolution? New data from Energy Matters reveals some surprising results.

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Would the people of Salisbury, South Australia, please stand up. New data from solar installer Energy Matters has found that the unassuming suburb 25km north of Adelaide was highest adopter of solar among Australia’s capital cities in 2013, adding just over 2000 new rooftop PV installations over the year and saving more than $3.8 million in the first year of installation.

As the table below shows, the 2013 effort by Salisbury puts it in third place for total solar penetration, behind the Perth suburb of Mandurah (46%) and, in number one position, Brisbane’s Browns Plains (51%). (click on image to enlarge)

Screen Shot 2014-04-24 at 12.43.00 PM
Click on image to enlarge

Interestingly, Sydney – where the feed-in tariff for rooftop solar PV remained comparatively high – is lagging far behind the rest of Australia in the solar adoption stakes, with its highest adopting suburb for 2013, Campbelltown, installing only 639 PV systems for the year.

Melbourne also appears to be straggling, with its highest-adopting suburb, Wyndham, reaching a total penetration of only 22 per cent after adding 1280 systems in 2013.

But the worst performer, according to the data, was Greater Sydney’s Kogarah/Rockdale, with only 128 new solar installations in 2013, and a installed rooftop PV penetration of 6 per cent.

According to Energy Matters, those remaining 94 per cent of Kogarah/Rockdale residents who didn’t install a solar system on their roofs have collectively missed out on $602,000 in energy bill savings in the first year.

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5 Comments
  1. Beat Odermatt 6 years ago

    It clearly demonstrates that people with medium-low income are far more interested to install solar PV than people in the high income suburbs. The myth that solar is for the rich is well and truly dead, killed by facts.

  2. Mark Thompson 6 years ago

    It also clearly demonstrates how those who are struggling a/ want to invest what they do have so that they will save money over the longer journey, b/ care more for the environment, / prepared to listen to environmental groups & take their advice.

  3. Ian 6 years ago

    This could also mean that the installed base of solar reflects the time when large subsidies were given to pensioners and low income earners by the labour government and not to those working and supporting the government with their tax. Secondly,the pathetic feed in tariffs now in place for new solar installations favour self consumption of solar generated electricity. This makes economic sense if a person is at home during the day to use this electricity. Anyone out earning an income in the day will not benefit. Again this would favour the lower income suburbs.

  4. Alex Turnbull 6 years ago

    Where is the data from?

  5. madankerr 6 years ago

    The different solar uptake in Campbelltown and Rockdale/Kogarah probably relates more to housing type than income or any ‘smarts’ about solar.

    In Rockdale, 37% of housing is apartments, compared with only 4% in Campbelltown, according to Census data.

    Praising towns/suburbs for having lots of rooftop PV is like praising them for having lots of suburban bungalows. Bit silly, really.

    The REAL message in this data is that we need to smooth the way for PV on apartments, whether owned or rented.

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