In a Nutshell:
- There is still a rebate given by the Federal government for installing solar.
- The rebate is given as a discount on the price of the system by your installer.
- The installer claims the rebate on your behalf.
- There is a small amount of paperwork to complete on signing up and then on the day of installation. The salesperson will guide you through this.
- The rebate is not Means Tested.
- You can claim once per property.
- You can claim on multiple properties.
In August 2009, the Federal Labor Government introduced the Solar Credits Scheme which entitles homeowners, businesses and non profit organisations to a subsidy in the form of Small Technology Certificates (STC). The number of STCs that you’re entitled to and therefore the size of the assistance you’ll receive, depends on the system size installed (in kWs) and the amount of solar radiation your location receives.
If you’d like to know what Small Technology Certificates (STCs) actually are, why they exist and how their value is calculated, read on.
Otherwise, go to the next page about How Feed in Tariffs work.
- Small Technology Certificates (STCs)
Small Technology Certificates (STCs) form part of the Solar Credit Scheme which was introduced in 2009 by the Labor Government. The Solar Credit Scheme is part of the Renewable Energy Target (RET) which was introduced by John Howard’s Coalition Government in 2001. As you can see, both parties have been supporting Renewable Energy for a while to certain degrees.
- Renewable Energy Target (RET)
The RET mandates that by 2020, Energy retailers need to source 20% of the electricity that they sell from renewable sources. If they don’t meet their target for that year, they need to make up the difference by buying Small Technology Certificates from people who install renewable energy either on their home or business or from large scale solar or wind farms.
- Solar Credits Scheme
- A way for Energy retailers to meet their renewable energy requirements under the Renewable Energy Target (RET) by paying you to produce power instead of producing it themselves.
- For every 1 mWh of electricity that your system is expected to produce over the next 15 years, you’re entitled to 1 Small Technology Certificate (STC).
- Your installer will sell the STCs to a broker on your behalf who will then sell them to an Energy retailer who hasn’t met their target.
- You’ll receive the value of the STCs as a discount on the purchase price of your system.
- At times when companies aren’t meeting their targets, they need to buy STCs and so the price per certificate goes up.
- The higher STC price means a larger rebate which means lower system prices > more systems are subsequently installed across the country.
- The higher number of systems means more renewable energy is produced which makes up for the company’s shortfall and Australia as a whole hits the target for that year.
Let’s look at an example.
A 5 kW system in Perth or Sydney will produce around 105 mWh over a 15 year period so you as the homeowner are entitled to 105 STCs, which currently trade for around $38 each. This means the rebate for a 5kW system should be around $3,990.