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Govt solar switch-off blame

Brett Randall and Rhys Andrews installing extra solar inverters for North Coast Power and Water, which generates all its own power for its Coffs Harbour premises.
Brett Randall and Rhys Andrews installing extra solar inverters for North Coast Power and Water, which generates all its own power for its Coffs Harbour premises. Bruce Thomas

BRETT Randall says the current downturn in the solar industry is the worst he has ever seen.

Mr Randall has been working in the Coffs Coast solar industry for 12 years, supplying and installing solar hot water systems and solar photovoltaic power systems.

Today the principal of Solar Powered Homes says he is battling to keep his team of six staff working as the industry treads water while waiting for a decision on the solar feed-in tariff from the NSW Government.

“It has always been a very tough industry to be in, because it is cyclical and dependant on government policy,” Mr Randall said.

“This is the worst ever, because it followed the biggest uptake of solar systems and coincided with the (federal) Office of Renewable Energy Registry reducing the value of the Small Technology Certificates.”

“Overnight we went from installing four systems a week to none.

Mr Randall said he was fortunate to have other strings to his bow.

An electrician, he also installs systems and carries out safety audits and also trades in renewable energy certificates as an agent in that market.

He said the solar industry had a very good track record in terms of safety.

Topics:  coffs coast



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