Rooftop Solar Now 4th Largest Source of Electricity in Australia: Associati

Rooftop solar now accounts for 11.2 percent of Australia’s electricity supply.

That’s according to the latest Rooftop Solar and Storage Report of Australia’s Clean Energy Council, an association that represents the country’s renewable energy and energy storage businesses.

Households and businesses play a leading role in Australia’s renewable energy transition, the association said in the report.

The report, developed with data provided by solar consultancy SunWiz, also found that rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) system installations reached 20 gigawatts (GW) of total capacity across Australia last year.

Collectively, rooftop solar is now the second largest source of renewable electricity generation in Australia, behind wind energy generation, and the fourth largest source of electricity generation, providing approximately 11.2 percent of the country’s power supply, the report said.

According to the report, New South Wales broke the record for the highest annual installed capacity of any state, with 970 megawatts (MW) of new rooftop solar systems. Meanwhile, Queensland was the first state to surpass a total of one million rooftop solar installations in 2023.

Con Hristodoulidis, Clean Energy Council Policy Director of Distributed Energy, noted that rooftop solar is experiencing rapid growth in Australia’s clean energy mix, with an estimated one in three households and businesses installing the technology.

“The sheer scale and pace of rooftop solar in Australia is unparalleled anywhere else in the world, due to an abundance of sunshine and the inherent benefits including lower energy bills and feed-in tariffs,” Hristodoulidis said.

“Last year saw 2.9 GW of new capacity installed from 314,507 units, marking the second-biggest year for the uptake of rooftop solar, solidifying its position as the second-largest source of renewable generation and the fourth-largest source of all electricity generation in Australia. More than three million Australians understand that their rooftop solar systems are providing them with substantial savings, greater value and peace of mind,” he continued.

“The recent announcement by the Federal Government of the $1 billion Solar Sunshot manufacturing support program is a positive sign for future progress, as we leverage world-leading research and innovation to make more solar products right here in Australia,” he remarked.

A total of 57,000 behind-the-meter batteries were also installed in 2023. When combined with the future uptake of behind-the-meter batteries, households have even more to gain, all the while supporting Australia’s timely transition to a renewable energy future, the association said.

“It is clear that now is the time to back home batteries, build on their growing popularity among households and write the next chapter of Australia’s solar success story,” Hristodoulidis noted.

“This is why the Clean Energy Council has led calls for a national Home Battery Saver Program of up to $6500 per household to provide more Australians with cost-of-living relief and the added flexibility of storing, using and trading lower-cost electricity generated at home, tailored to their needs,” he added.

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