South Australian solar uptake has almost doubled compared to the same period in the first four months of 2016, according to a report released by the Australian Photovoltaic Institute yesterday. Over 22,618 new solar setups were installed from Jan – April in South Australia – beating the figures from the corresponding period in 2016 by 7,000 – almost 1/3!
South Australian Solar Figures
According to the MD of solar energy consultants SunWiz, Warwick Johnston, another 800MW of solar will be installed in Australia this year – and if you include the solar farm projects underway this will equal 1GW added to the ‘national grid’. RenewEconomy project that by 2019, 64% of South Australian energy demand will be filled by wind and solar power. Their figures show that, of the projected 12GW of renewable energy Australia will create by end of 2018, 7.4GW will be from solar energy and 5.4GW will be generated through wind power. South Australia is atypical in that it will generate 1.088MW of solar and 1.998MW of wind to create its 64%. There’s plenty of scope to increase the solar power generation in South Australia. It’ll also be very interesting to see how they manage fluctuations in sun/wind (thus impacting generation) as the solar battery technology continues to improve – but is the pace quick enough to solve their energy problems?
Australian Solar Projections 2017
The Solar Choice installer network have shown the price per watt of residential solar power hit a new low of $1.57 in April. The commercial price (i.e. large scale system) rose by a small margin to $1.23 / watt. We currently only have one solar module manufacturer – Tindo Solar – who cracked the top 5 and top 10 suppliers in commercial and overall panel sales (respectively). Will we see more local manufacturers enter the fray?
What can we expect to happen in the last 7 months of 2017? The price per watt will continue to drop and the impending Australian release of the Tesla Powerwall 2 will be sure to generate more interest in the market. Australians already lead the world in residential PV solar uptake, with 26% of households having solar panels on their roofs, but that still leaves 74% without. The energy storage situation is a little slower as the technology continues to improve – so the launch of the Powerwall in combination with new offerings on the market should increase the amount of Australians adding storage to their PV arrays.