Why is the Solar feed-in tariff decreasing?
Right now, during the middle of the day, there is an abundance of solar generation being exported into the grid.
This is also the time of day when demand for electricity is very low.
This means that the value of solar is diminishing and often the price of electricity in the wholesale market is negative.
For us, right now, it means we're being charged when solar export is high, and therefore there is no benefit in paying you a high feed-in tariff for this energy.
We're actually losing money on this plan.
I'm in Victoria, why did the feed-in tariff change during the fixed contract period?
The feed-in tariff that we pay you for the electricity you generate is different to the rates and charges for the electricity you use from us.
The rates and charges for the electricity you use are fixed and will not change during the fixed term.
As stated in your welcome letter and our Market Retail Contract, however, the feed-in tariff can change with 5 business days advance written notice. We have provided this notice, and your feed-in tariff will change on 1st December 2023.
Why doesn't this happen with larger retailers?
It does, but they are more easily able to use the energy with a mixed portfolio of business, commercial and industrial consumers, who are typically consuming large amounts of electricity in the middle of the day.
Are there high feed-in tariffs still out there?
Yes. If this is what's most important to you, there are high feed-in tariffs from the likes of AGL which can be easily accessed.
You can find out more by comparing retailers at the below:
- If you're in QLD, SA or NSW https://www.energymadeeasy.gov.au/ and,
- If you're in Victoria https://www.energy.vic.gov.au/for-households/save-energy-and-money/compare-energy-offers.
How can I make better use of my solar generation?
If you can, it's always going to be better for you to self-consume the energy that you generate.
Solar feed-in tariffs were designed to increase the amount of renewable generation in the grid by giving customers a way to pay off the high economic outlay of installing solar panels in the first place.
However, the value of that energy is always reducing, because it is being produced in the middle of the day when there's not a large amount of demand. Without capturing the generation, or using it at the time it's being created, the economics just don't stack up.
If we take a typical property in Victoria, any energy that's consumed on site costs an average of $0.25/kWh, whilst the minimum solar feed-in tariff is paid out at $0.049/kWh.
If you could shift all of your demand to self-consume the energy you generate, it's a benefit of $0.201/kWh.
The types of things that can be done to self-consume the energy:
- Program your dishwasher, washing machine or dryer to start during periods when you are generating solar
- If your HVAC system uses electricity, pre-cool / heat your house when you’re generating electricity
- Charge all of your devices during this time
- If you have an Electric Vehicle (EV), charge it during this time
In reality, we know it can be very hard to move all of this consumption into the middle of the day, so storage (home batteries) become an important piece in this puzzle.
You can generate the electricity, store it in a battery, and use it later at a more appropriate time for you - instead of shifting your demand to the middle of the day.
Will the high feed-in tariff be back in the future?
We’ll keep reviewing the market and update accordingly.
Is The Solar Plan available to new customers?
We currently aren't offering this to new customers.