Australia’s small-scale rooftop solar systems sets a new grid record

Kane Thornton, Chief Executive of Clean Energy Council
Kane Thornton, Chief Executive of Clean Energy Council

Australia’s small-scale rooftop solar systems have set a new precedent, a whole new record this summer, supplying more of Australia’s electricity than brown coal. Providing a record of 14 per cent of Australia’s needs, rooftop solar has also dispatched more energy to the grid than all other available renewable sources, including grid-scale wind farms and solar farms.

What is the regional breakdown of solar usage?

The total output for rooftop solar for the summer was 8046 GWh, up by 19.5 per cent compared to the previous year. Energy bills have risen by between 15 and 20 per cent since mid-2022 sparking a surge in different small-scale solar installations across the country.

State GWh GWh change compared to previous summer Contribution to Generation (%) Contribution change compared to previous summer
NSW 2216 +30.5% 13.1 +35.0%
QLD 2039 +17.7% 12.5 +14.7%
SA 969 +18.5% 27.6 +12.7%
TAS 105 +16.7% 5.4 +31.7%
VIC 1590 +16.2% 12.2 +16.2%
WA 374 +7.5% 21.4 +15.7%
Australia 8046 +19.5%   14.0% +19.7%

More than three million homes and businesses now keep costs down using rooftop solar. Rising power prices are reducing the projected time for newly installed systems to pay for themselves. A state-by-state analysis of our summer performance tells another tale, with South Australia leading the way but New South Wales being the most improved of all the states.

The Clean Energy Council has also produced a list of Australia’s top postcodes for rooftop solar, state by state. In New South Wales, Lismore topped the rankings; in Queensland, the Bundaberg region led rooftop solar; in South Australia, it was Salisbury; in Victoria, it was Hoppers Crossing; in Tasmania, Blackstone Heights and in Western Australia, Mandurah.

Battery installations are rising, with 7 per cent of new systems including installations in 2022.

1 2480 4670 5108 3029 7250 6210
2 2155 4655 5162 3977 7310 6065
3 2830 4551 5159 3064 7018 6112
4 2259 4350 5114 3030 7030 6164
5 2560 4300 5158 3805 7315 6155

What were Clean Energy Council’s remarks?

Clean Energy Council Chief Executive Kane Thornton said the achievement was noteworthy, given this summer has enjoyed less sunshine than in an average year. “There is no doubt with inflation and cost of living pressures, people are turning to rooftop solar in record numbers.”

“Thousands of Australians across the country are switching to rooftop solar and are realizing the various benefits to their hip pockets and also to the environment. In fact, payback periods for rooftop solar are now at near record-low levels, at 3.4 years for a 7 kW system. We are seeing a fundamental shift; consumers are now becoming energy generators, making their own clean energy, reducing their bills and taking on the electricity companies,” Thornton said.

Kane Thornton said these figures measure only what enters the grid. “Even more clean, low-cost generation of energy was produced and used by households themselves, taking the pressure off our strained system. Australia is a world leader in rooftop solar.” he further added.


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