Solar photovoltaic, or ‘PV’ cells, convert sunlight to electricity. This electricity is 12 volt direct current (DC). For most households, solar electricity could replace a large part of the electricity produced by fossil fuels.
Since 2000, global PV production has been increasing at around 50% a year.
Central Victoria enjoys on average about four hours of sunlight a day, so a 1 kW PV system can be expected to produce about 4 kWh a day. This is around 30% of average household consumption.
WHY INSTALL PV?
- Once installed and operating, a PV system emits no greenhouse gases. A 1kW system will save about 1.5 tonnes of CO2 per year.
- Solar electricity uses less water than generating electricity via fossil fuels.
- The cumulative effect of installing a number of small solar PV systems can soon become significant (at current rates of installation – July 2013 – solar panels will make coal-fired power stations redundant by 2040).
- Generous rebates have been available.
TYPES OF SYSTEMS
These details may change at short notice, so always check for the latest information
The Renewable Energy Target (RET)
The RET expands on the previous Mandatory Renewable Energy Target (MRET), which was established in 2001. From 1 January 2011 the RET has operated as two parts:
- Large-scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET)
- Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES).
The LRET encourages the deployment of large-scale renewable energy projects such as wind farms, while the SRES supports the installation of small-scale systems, including solar panels and solar water heaters.
Combined, the LRET and SRES are expected to deliver more renewable energy than the previous 45,000 gigawatt-hour target in 2020. Renewable energy will continue to receive support under the RET until the scheme ends in 2030, ensuring long-term support for the industry.
Further information on the LRET and the SRES, including support for households installing renewable energy systems and the Solar Credits mechanism can be found in the Enhanced RET fact sheet.
The Bendigo Bank offers Generation Green (TM) loans to help home owners finance the cost of installing a solar PV system. Call them on 1300 366 666.
While MASG has made every effort to assess the information, we cannot guarantee the authenticity of the information on every site.
Contacts are provided for private businesses, but MASG does not endorse and cannot be held responsible for the products or services offered by these companies, or for any transactions or business contracts entered into with the businesses listed below.
The list is not exhaustive.
The Solar Bloke
Rear 27 Lyttleton St
Castlemaine VIC 3450
PH: 5470 5890
Tel: (03) 8626 8700
Alternative Technology Association (ATA)
Tel: (03) 9639 1500
Clean Energy Council
The Clean Energy Council is an amalgamation of the Australian Wind Energy Association (Auswind) and the Australian Business council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE). The Council represents over 400 businesses.
Tel: (03) 9929 4100
Ballarat Renewable Energy and Zero Emissions Inc (BREAZE)
A sister organisation to MASG.
Tel: 5329 1730
Tel: 1300 30 58 33
Tel: 1300 768 225
Tel: 1800 074 007
M + H Power Systems
Tel: 9763 0555
Specific Products or Suppliers:
Tel: 1300 266 374
Tel: 1800 786 769
Tel: 133 765
Tel: 1800 242 118
Ecosouth Solar Electricity
Tel: (03) 8371 5655
Tel: 1800 022 888
PV Solar Tile
Tel: (02) 9558 0512
Tel: (03) 9348 1000
Tel: 1300 135 530
Tel: 1300 663 563