Massive surge in home solar installation

Home solar photo-voltaic installations have surged 46 per cent in the first quarter, putting the sector on track to install more than 2,000 megawatts (MW) of capacity in a year for the first time.

It was not long ago that a two thousand MW coal fired plant would be among Australia’s largest, cost billions and take a decade to install – yet household solar is likely to eclipse this in 2019.

The latest report from Green Energy Markets shows that 480 MW of rooftop capacity was installed in the year to March.

This is 46 per cent up on last year and more than twice the average for the quarter over the past four years.

The accelerating trend has been fuelled by new rebates in Victoria and the increasing competitiveness of solar PV – systems installed in the quarter will shave $850 million from consumers’ power bills.

Green Energy Markets commented: “Given the level of installations tend to rise towards the end of the year, it appears likely small-scale rooftop solar installations over 2019 will exceed 2,000 megawatts nationally.

“If the rate of installations in quarter 1 were to be maintained until the end of 2022, it would provide additional generation greater than that due to be lost from the closure of Liddell Power Station.”

On the industrial power front, more than 20,000 job-years have been created by large-scale solar PV systems now under construction.

Victoria is well ahead of other states with projects creating 7,580 job-years. This is 52% greater than Queensland with 4,974 job years and almost double NSW’s construction employment of 3,825 job years.

Picture: Tindo Solar/Adelaide manufacturing operations

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