The Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) has determined a mandatory solar feed-in tariff for customers in regional Queensland for 2018–19.
The QCA has set the feed-in tariff for regional customers in 2018–19 at 9.369 cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh).
QCA Chair Professor Green said that this value will give customers with solar panels a fair and reasonable return for the electricity they export to the grid.
"This rate is lower than last year's feed-in tariff of 10.102 c/kWh, primarily due to a reduction in wholesale energy costs. This reduction is mainly driven by the expected entry of approximately 5000 megawatt of solar and wind generation into the National Electricity Market.
"Our consultant, ACIL Allen, also attributed the reduction to the Queensland Government's directive to Stanwell in June 2017, which required Stanwell to put downward pressure on prices," Professor Green said.
Professor Green said when retailers buy energy from customers with solar panels, they avoid having to pay some of their normal business costs.
"Costs that the retailers do not pay are wholesale energy costs, certain fees levied by the Australian Energy Market Operator and the cost of energy losses associated with transporting electricity over long distances. The QCA estimates these avoided costs, and uses the estimates to calculate the solar feed-in tariff.
"However, retailers still incur most of their normal business costs, including retail operating costs and network charges. That is why the solar feed-in tariff is less than regulated electricity prices."
Customers who receive the 44 c/kWh feed-in tariff under the Solar Bonus Scheme will not be affected by the new tariff. They will stay on the same feed-in tariff until 2028 as long as they maintain their eligibility.
Customers in south east Queensland (who are on the Energex distribution network) can choose among feed-in tariffs offered by retailers. These tariff rates are published on the Australian Energy Regulator's price comparator website www.energymadeeasy.gov.au.
All media inquiries: Cole Lawson Communications, 07 3221 2220 or 0437 922 496.
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