Solar households to face a sun tax for exporting their clean power
12th August 2021: Solar households to face a sun tax for exporting their clean power
Solar Citizens has today slammed a ruling by the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) which will see Australian solar households charged for exporting their clean energy.
Known as ‘the sun tax’, this rule change will see networks now given the power to charge solar households, previously prohibited under the energy rules.
“This decision to penalise households for sharing their clean solar energy is deeply disappointing,” said Ellen Roberts, Solar Citizens’ National Director.
“We will see less renewable energy in the grid if people are discouraged from exporting or investing in solar panels in the first place. Households now have to pay to export their power while big coal and gas generators get off scot free. This does not make our energy system fairer.
“The Victorian and Queensland Energy Ministers have stated their strong opposition to charging solar householders in their States. It’s now up to all Energy Ministers to say whether they will implement these rules in their State, or whether they will protect rooftop solar. The ball is in their court.
“South Australia, Tasmania and NSW have also expressed concern at existing solar households being penalised, but this proposal will see existing customers charged for exporting their power in just three years.
“The AEMC has stated that all solar customers will be offered an option not to be charged, but in South Australia, for example, this would slash households’ export capacity to less than a third of what it is now.
“This rule change gives all the power to networks without adequate safeguards to protect consumers.
“Rooftop solar is challenging coal fired power stations and threatening them with early closure. If we want our emissions to go down we need to see more rooftop solar exports, not less.
“We know that Australia’s solar homes and businesses are not only driving down electricity bills but also playing a major role in slashing Australia’s emissions. The sun tax shows Morrison’s ‘technology not taxes’ for the empty slogan that it is. This week Morrison talked up Australia’s world leading rates of rooftop solar while standing by as ordinary households are charged for doing their bit to bring down power prices and emissions.”
Media contact: Ellen Roberts 0408 583 694