Throughout the past decade, Australia has tirelessly worked to expand the use of solar panels in a bid to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels to generate enough electricity to power homes, institutions, and businesses. In recent weeks, particularly in South Australia, these efforts are finally paying off as the region can now easily boast that one out of every three households uses solar panels to supply its electricity requirements.
It is estimated that around 3.6 million homes throughout Australia now rely on the use of solar photovoltaic (PV) cells to generate their own electricity, putting the country way ahead of other nations when it comes to the wholesale adoption of renewables.
Today, rooftop solar panel systems provide around 11% of Australia’s total electricity requirements. While this is a respectable enough amount, it remains a drop in the bucket compared to the Australian government’s goal of getting 82% of the nation’s electricity from renewable sources by the end of the current decade.
A Fortuitous Accident
Surprisingly, while Australia has been working on increasing the use of renewable power among its people, the government did not exactly have a plan in place for such action.
While individual states had their respective policies for the adoption of renewable power technologies, there was no comprehensive plan devised for national implementation.
Nevertheless, these seemingly disjointed policies have made it possible for solar technologies to become more affordable for the bulk of the population. Based on current rates, the average Australian home can have a six-kilowatt solar panel system installed on its roof for about A$6,000 – and it is an investment that will essentially pay for itself within five years of placement. It has also helped that new-generation solar panels are quite easy to install.
The increased number of Australian homes using PV panels for energy has also given the local solar installation industry a major boost thanks to a growing number of installations, as well as homeowners seeking battery storage for any excess power generated by their systems.