Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Energy spokesperson
The Hodgman Government’s announced feed-in solar energy tariff cut, from 28c/kWh to just 8.5c/kWh for legacy investors, demonstrates just how little they intend to support the growth of a residential solar sector.
The Liberals are prepared to spend more than $5 billion on a pumped hydro scheme to make Tasmania the renewable “battery for the nation”, but are penny-pinching about a small spend to stimulate a cost-saving solar sector for Tasmanian householders.
Tasmanians who install a new solar renewable system are only eligible for a tariff of 8.5c/kWh for the clean power they produce. However, people who installed solar before September 2013 have been compensated the same amount for the renewable electricity they feed-in to the grid that Aurora charges customers - 28c/kWh.
When the legacy arrangement ends on New Year’s Day, those households will have their feed-in tariff cut to 13.5c/kWh – but only for one year. Beyond that, the tariff will drop even further to 8.5c/kWh.
Minister Barnett’s solar tariff cut will give no comfort to people who invested in technology to generate solar power.
Tasmanians endure the highest electricity prices in the country, primarily because state-owned energy companies, under the direction of the Liberal Government, have constructed pricing regulations that ensure dividends return to the State Budget.
Tasmania needs to invest in new solar and energy-efficiency programs. It’s a critical step in transitioning to a zero carbon future.
Tasmanians should be encouraged to generate their own clean, green solar power. The Liberals’ policy to cut the feed-in tariff will only slow our transition to solar.