New draft tariff doubles the price for solar power
SOLAR households and businesses in Coffs Harbour could receive double the price for the power they feed-in to the grid, following the release of a new draft tariff.
The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal's draft determination of a fair value for solar raises the previous tariff of 5.5-7.2 cents per kilowatt hour to 11.6-14.6 cents per kilowatt hour.
Minister for Energy and Utilities Don Harwin said the IPART draft tariff will help customers negotiate a better deal from energy retailers.
"The tariff is not subsidised by other energy users so it won't increase power prices. It will help deliver lower energy bills for NSW's 350,000 solar households,” he said.
Feed-in tariffs are a payment for excess generation fed into the grid.
The benchmark range is lower than the amount charged for electricity by retailers as it excludes distribution costs as well as retail services, metering and billing.
Currently 5106 households and businesses in Coffs Harbour are generating power from solar systems.
Member for Coffs Harbour Andrew Fraser welcomed the fairer tariff and encouraged retailers to offer a competitive deal to their customers.
"Consumers can avoid costly energy by consuming as much from solar as possible, and the feed-in tariff rewards the excess power that goes back into the grid,” Mr Fraser said.
The NSW Government are attempting to expand access to solar power through their Home Energy Action Program.
The CSIRO says 35% of generation by 2050 could come from rooftop solar.
When shopping around customers are advised to consider all aspects of a retailer's offer, including charges, feed-in tariffs, discounts, late payment fees and early exit fees.
The final tariff determination will be issued in June following consultation.