We have provided some information and a variety of free resource links for to have a look at, from Clean Energy Council (CEC) regulations, to how does solar work and some other links for further reading.
There are some easy, practical and realistic steps you can take to help cut your bills and reduce energy consumption. You don’t have to do them all – initiating even a few changes can make a difference. The more you do, the more you can save.
Some actions don’t cost anything and you can start doing them today – like turning appliances off at the power point, not leaving laptops and mobile phones on charge unnecessarily, taking shorter showers, and using a ‘solar’ clothes dryer (a clothes line!) – rather than your electric one when possible.
Others you can do when you need to upgrade appliances – like comparing the water and energy rating labels of different appliances before you buy, or when you are building or renovating.
Switch your lights to LED – in some instances this is just purchasing the right LED bulb – other times you might need to change over the transformer. Talk to us today if you would like a quote on this – LED lights throughout your home can save you quite a bit of money!
Some require a larger investment, like installing solar power, but there is still a government rebate that can help with these.
NOTE: From December 2016, this amount started reducing – we are not talking huge amounts but it does reduce each year on the 1st January.
Clean Energy Council
The Clean Energy Council is the peak body for the clean energy industry in Australia.
The Clean Energy Council maintains a list of compliant inverters and power conversion equipment (PCE) that are approved for installation under the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES). This list is also used by some distribution network service providers to validate inverter energy system applications.
The equipment listed has shown sufficient evidence that it meets the required safety standards for use within Australia. Evidence of compliance, in the form of Certificates of Suitability, has been examined and verified by the Clean Energy Council.
The Clean Energy Council maintains a list of compliant solar photovoltaic (PV) modules that are approved for installation under the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES). This list is used by the Clean Energy Regulator and state electricity regulators.
The equipment listed has shown sufficient evidence that it meets the required safety standards for use within Australia. Evidence of compliance has been examined and verified by the Clean Energy Council.
The Clean Energy Council’s Battery Assurance Program includes a list of lithium-based batteries (energy storage devices) that meet industry best practice requirements.
The list provides consumers with independent information on the safety of home battery products that are independently tested to confirm they meet certain electrical safety and quality standards.
Currently the financial assistance offered for solar PV systems in Australia is through Renewable Energy Certificates (REC’s) and Feed-In Tariffs.
More detailed information can be obtained from the relevant web sites of your power company.
SREC (Solar Renewable Energy Certificates)
Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) are an electronic form of currency created by the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000 (also known as the RET scheme). One REC is equivalent to one megawatt hour of electricity generated by your solar PV power system. The price of RECs changes according to market conditions.
REC’s or STC’s are usually signed over to whoever sold you your solar system which helps to reduce the overall cost of your system.
Queensland operates a net feed-in tariff. Under a net feed-in tariff, a premium is paid for any solar energy that goes back into the grid from your house. So if you have surplus energy generated by your solar panels, you get paid for it; and if you use all of the energy you generate it will be offset against your normal electricity bill.
You need to apply to your electricity retailer to receive the feed-in tariff. When signing an agreement with your electricity retailer, you need to be informed. In particular, you should check with your electricity retailer about any tariff changes that will occur as a result of installing solar and carefully weigh up the advantages and disadvantages before making a decision. There are a number of important questions to ask about your feed-in tariff, which are explained in more detail in the Clean Energy Council’s Consumer Guide.