South Australian households and small customers with solar energy panels will soon be getting a guaranteed extra 10 cents for each kilowatt-hour of electricity they feed into the grid.

Currently, South Australia’s nation-leading feed-in laws guarantees a bonus of 44 cents per kilowatt-hour of excess electricity fed back into the grid from household solar panels.

Premier and Minister for Sustainability and Climate Change, Mike Rann, today announced the State government intends introducing legislation to increase the bonus to 54 cents per kilowatt hour.

In a keynote address on South Australia’s Leadership within a Carbon Constrained Economy, Mr Rann said the extra 10 cents was not the only benefit available to South Australians who invest in solar energy.

“In addition, retail electricity providers will be obligated to pay a cost for the power they receive from residents who feed power into the grid via their solar panels.

This will be in addition to the 54 cents and could well bring the bonus up to around 60 cents per kilowatt hour.”

“The Government believes that South Australians that choose to invest in solar energy deserve to be paid a fair price for the power they contribute to the network. Our amended scheme will ensure this happens.”

The payment by electricity retail companies will be at least as generous as that paid in the other States. This includes NSW which provides a higher payout but over 7 years, compared with South Australia’s 20 years.

The Government has also accepted recommendations from the review to restrict eligibility so that the feed-in benefit can be made available to as many consumers as possible.

Mr Rann says those intending to install solar panels to take advantage of the new scheme will be subject to new eligibility criteria including:

  • a limit of one generator per customer.
  • the exclusion of additional generators installed specifically to create a profit from the scheme.
  • the bonus will be limited to the first 45 kilowatt-hours per day – this limit will not affect normal residential systems (i.e. those less than 7 kilowatts).
When total installed capacity reaches 60 megawatts (expected to be around the end of next year) the scheme will be closed to new entrants.
This limit compares with the closure threshold of 100 megawatts for Victoria, a State with more than three times the population of South Australia, is the only State to have a determined limit.
South Australia’s feed-in scheme – the first of its type in the country – began 1st of July 2008 and since then the number of solar customers has risen to more than 18,000 and the combined total capacity of installed systems has exceeded 25 megawatts.
The recent review of the feed-in scheme was undertaken by an independent consultant and included discussions with major stakeholders and consideration of the 175 submissions received from a broad cross-section of the community.
Further information on the amended scheme, eligibility criteria and the consultant’s report is available at