Can you afford to go solar?
By Diana Gosper
Can you afford to go solar? Can you afford not to? For your family, your planet and your wallet, what makes sense (and saves you dollars!) in 2019.
There is a growing global trend to switch to renewable energy, and Australia is no different; 2018 had the largest uptake of installations ever.
The only way to meet our Renewable Energy Target (RET) (a Federal Government policy designed to ensure that at least 33,000 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of Australia's electricity comes from renewable sources by 2020) is if a whole lot more people choose renewable energy for their homes and businesses, and with over 2 million Aussies already reaping the benefits of a solar array, it looks like the sun is doing its bit.
There are ways to make it more achievable for low income families.
Government rebates have more recently been one of the most driving incentives for Australian households and businesses to change over to renewables, and that trend continues. The Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (STCs) allows for households and small businesses across Australia to receive a benefit to help with the cost of installing a renewable energy system (on grid, hybrid, off grid, pool filtration), as well as for eligible hot water and pumping systems.
Additionally, Summerland Credit Union offer an eco-loan to customers wishing to install solar, and are a community run and customer owned business who are investing in a renewable future.
It is also good to note that people planning their solar array before they build are at a distinct advantage, as they get to follow some guidelines; an energy efficient home is easier to cool or heat. If your home is more energy efficient it will improve comfort, but will also save money on appliances and utilities. Insulation, location, and the materials used in home construction will all help to boost energy efficiency.
When thinking about going solar, it is also worth doing a little bit of an overhaul of your energy usage. The following modifications to your lifestyle can significantly reduce your power consumption (and reduce the money you need to spend on a solar power system).
- Cooking with gas or wood fired stove (using it to boil water and make toast also
- Switching to solar hot water or wood-fired hot water.
- Switching to one of the new highly efficient fridges (or go with a gas fridge).
- Changing from a desktop computer to a laptop.
- Switching to an energy efficient TV, stereo and washing machine.
- Reverting to manual dish-washing instead of a dishwasher.
- Reducing your usage of high energy appliances (limiting the kids to 2 hours per day on the screen can be seen as a bonus!)
- Using high energy appliances during the day when sun is on the panels. Also charging battery devices during the day, in essence maximising use of your own generated power.
If money is no issue, you can now achieve the comfortable lifestyle you are used to with a solar powered energy system. If there are financial barriers, you can still look at reducing your energy consumption, installing a cheaper system and possibly getting a loan or STCs to offset the cost substantially.
When it comes to coal, you do NOT get what you pay for. In 2019 Australia’s coal earnings are predicted to exceed $67 billion, making it our largest commodity export.
Unfortunately, the benefits and the profits stay at the top, regular Jan and Jo still pay through the nose for electricity, and the planet is the one that suffers, along with our future generations.
Give the dirty and aging coal fired companies the flick and put your money where your heart is- with our planet and with our children.
Rainbow Power Company has been at the forefront of the renewable energy sector for over 30 years. We only use high quality, user friendly, efficient, cost effective products, supported by reliable up-to-date advice and after sales service. Contact us to make 2019 your year for solar.