The Tasmanian Government is set to maintain the existing feed in tariff levels for users who feed solar energy back into the grid.
It was feared that with the sale of Government owned Aurora Energy solar feed in tariffs for the state would dramatically decrease from the existing 27 cents per kilowatt hour. The issue has been cause for Australia’s solar consumer rights group Solar Citizens to campaign for an equitable solution post-privatisation.
Both the Liberal and Labor party have backed the plan to keep the current feed in tariff rate for three years up until 2017. This will apply to those who currently have systems installed and those who install before 31st December. For many this will provide assurance that their investment will pay for itself within the expected timeframe.
Despite the victory, the longer term prospects of the feed in tariffs still remain up in the air, and with some systems with longer payback periods there becomes less certainty of time periods to payback. Energy Minister Bryan Green wants the economic regulator to set future feed in tariffs to ensure they remain fair.
Solar Citizens have praised the Issues paper and have urged people to sign their petition, put forward submissions to the Electricity Reform Project, and let their local members of parliament know how important the issue is for them.