No-interest solar loans being considered by QLD

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palasczuk and the Queensland Government are considering adding no-interest solar loans to their arsenal of weapons against the rising cost of living in the Sunshine State. Despite the rapid advent of solar energy in Queensland prices are still high and consumer sentiment is at an all-time low.

No-Interest Solar Loans

QLD Treasurer Curtis Pitt advised that the government will offer no-interest solar loans for Queenslanders unable to raise the relatively high cost of investing in solar and battery tech.

“Solar panels and batteries are a great way for households and small businesses to cut their electricity bills, but for some the upfront cost can be a challenge,” Mr Pitt said.

Electricity saving scheme in QLD

Annastacia Palaszczuk - No-interest solar loans in QLD
Annastacia Palaszczuk – No-interest solar loans in QLD (source:

Earlier this week Ms Palaszczuk threatened to re-enter the retail energy market in Queensland if the Government’s saving scheme isn’t passed on to customers. She vowed to cut $50 from Queenslanders’ energy bills for the next two years and has also introduced a rebate of up to $300 for residents that want to purchase approved energy-efficient appliances.

“The time for action in Queensland is now,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“I’m the only Premier across Australia that can take this action and the reason I can do that is because Queenslanders own their assets.
“They’re our assets, they’re our dividends and now we’re going to use those dividends to help ease the pressures facing families across Queensland.

“Over this term we have used that money to pay down debt and restore frontlines services and now we’re moving to the next phase.”

The Government are giving over a dozen retailers until the end of the week to sign an “energy pledge”, which commits them to a public pledge to reduce bills (in lockstep with the Government’s attempts to reduce the wholesale costs of electricity).

According to the ABC, Origin and Alinta have “immediately said yes” and the rest of the companies have been asked to reply by close of business today. 

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QLD Solar Feed-In Tariff to stay

After the deregulation of south-east QLD electricity prices last July more than 200,000 households on the grandfathered $0.44c solar feed-in tariff will keep the incentive until 2028 – despite the Productivity Commission advising against it whilst also calling for the deregulated prices . The Commission’s report advised that this will cost Queensland taxpayers $3 billion over the next ten years, and $1.4 billion more already incurred. But the legalities around the contract are water tight and those smart enough to take up solar energy during those times deserve what was offered to them by the government.

QLD Solar Feed-In Tariff
QLD Solar Feed-In Tariff to stay.

Solar Feed-In Tariff History

Anna Bligh’s government passed the 44c/kWh feed-in tariff in 2009 and it was eventually restricted in 2012. According to the Queensland Competition Authority, regional electricity price raises (7-8%) are a direct result of the ‘substantial increase’ in wholesale energy costs. These costs have undoubtedly been affected by the FIT, which will result in $770m over the next three years.

Matthew Warren, CE of the Australian Energy Council said the removal of the Solar Bonus scheme from electricity network charges would represent a fairer situation for residents and businesses in Queensland.

“Previously all energy consumers have subsidised those who have put solar panel on their rooftops through higher electricity prices – we would urge the Queensland government to make the change permanent to avoid any future bill shock.”

Curtis Pitt (QLD Treasurer) was quoted as saying the Palaszczuk government will not abandon the solar bonus legislation, introduced by the former Bligh Labor government to facilitate rapid uptake of rooftop solar panels, which it certainly succeeded in doing. “We want to give people the certainty that that is going to remain in place,” he said. “I believe your word is your bond. We’d like to think we’re a government that is going to keep its election commitments and our election commitments were that was going to be maintained.”

Let’s hope they stick to their word.

Read more about Queensland Solar.

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