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Solar panel feed-in tariff proposal 'robs' Queenslanders
19/09/2012 - Queenslanders with solar panels on their roofs could soon be charged for the energy they produce.
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The Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) is proposing to introduce a gross feed-in tariff scheme for rooftop solar power.
The move would see households with solar panels sell all of their energy to the grid and then buy back what they need at a more expensive retail rate.
The current feed-in tariff allows households to use what they generate for free and sell any excess energy back to the grid.
Clean Energy Council Policy Director Russell Marsh says the move would "rob" Queenslanders of the chance to save money by generating their own electricity.
"What the Queensland Competition Authority has proposed is the equivalent of telling people they can't just use the lemons growing on the lemon tree in their backyard," Marsh said in a statement.
"They have to sell the produce to a wholesaler for next to nothing, and then buy the lemons back at a premium from the supermarket.
"Installing rooftop solar panels is one of the best ways households can save money on their electricity bills because it can significantly reduce the amount of electricity they need to buy from the grid."
Marsh said the scheme would see households sell their electricity to the grid for eight cents per kilowatt hour and buy it back for anywhere between 17 and 35 cents per kilowatt hour.
The QCA's draft report is due on November 30, with the final report to be released in March 2013.
But QCA chairman Brian Parmenter said the gross tariff was one of several changes to be considered after public consultation.
"All that's happened to date is we've put out an issues paper," he said.
"So we haven't set anything in stone or anything like that."
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geoff bonney | 19/09/2012 10:59 1
How ridiculous is the proposal from Queensland Competition authority to have householders sell all of their energy to the grid and buy it back at a higher rate. Where's the competition there. It looks like the electricity industry has their finger in this pie and is driving this stupid agenda. The reason householders pay for solar installation is to be able to access cheaper power with less environmental damage. Lets get real and tell the QCA how stupid their proposal is.
john | 19/09/2012 11:16 2
unbelievable, what a pack of wan*ers the Queensland people voted in.
CraigC | 19/09/2012 11:44 3
If they change my contracted rate before it is due (around another 12 years) I will take legal action to get my money back plus costs.
Kevin Hadfield | 19/09/2012 11:52 4
Protect the big guns at the expense of the tax payer, any logical person in their right mind would establish a bench mark that would see all contributors gain whereas this "paper" only looks to rob from the poor and give to the rich, this is not the Aussie way
Marcus Barber | 19/09/2012 12:08 5
Seems like they're suggesting a new form of 'legal theft' not unlike the form Russia used for small plot farmers
Jeff Hort | 19/09/2012 12:31 6
This has to be the most stupid proposal ever produced by a government. Get real. This is like the cost of Diesel fuel we get into diesel because it was cheaper and once in diesel is the most highly taxed.
MikeD | 19/09/2012 21:55 7
It is a sad state of affairs that several state liberal Governments QLD, Vic, etc. are removing incentives for solar power. This is clearly a money grab in favour of the energy distribution companies.
Trevor Toomer | 20/09/2012 09:00 8
Is this idea coming from people who claim to believe in a free market?
Geoff Holland | 20/09/2012 09:19 9
This idea, which suits LNP economic philosophy, stems from the concept of a 'free market' and a 'level playing field'. Fair enough. Let energy producers pay the cost of CO2 pollution and factor this cost into their production costs, and allow the price of electricity rise to its true market price. Then pay solar electricity producers the true market price for solar electricity - that is, the amount of solar electricity the producers wish to sell to the grid (ie excess). The 'free market' ideology and calls for a level playing field from the LNP and electricity utilities contradicts their support for fossil fuel subsidies. The cost of CO2 pollution is calculated by calculating maximum pollution to limit CO2 concentration to 350ppm, then divided by 7.1 billion people (world population) and multiplying by 20m (Australian population) - and whatever pollution cost is required to reduce Australian pollution to our fair share quota.
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