How much does solar energy really cost?
Solar power has been the most efficient form of power generation in Australia for a while now.
But this is no longer the case.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is reporting that the cost of solar energy has fallen significantly since the first quarter of this year, from around $13 per kilowatt hour to just under $10 per kWh.
But why are prices falling so rapidly?
Why is it so much cheaper?
We spoke to solar power experts to find out.
Solar Power is Still Cost-Effective The cost of a solar panel is often the main factor driving people to buy solar power.
And with solar power typically selling for around $10,000 to $20,000 per kW, this is certainly the case for some people.
For those on lower incomes and those who are struggling to make ends meet, however, it’s difficult to justify investing in solar power at all.
While there are a number of reasons why solar power prices are falling so quickly, one of the main reasons is the dramatic drop in the cost per kWh of solar panels.
This graph from the Australian Bureau on the cost/price of solar power shows the dramatic fall in solar panel costs over the past year.
It shows that the price of a 100 kWh solar panel dropped by more than half in a year, or by an incredible 80%.
The average cost per kW of solar has dropped by over 50% since the start of the year.
This is despite the fact that the panels are currently producing more electricity than any other power source in Australia.
As the ABC’s Mark Jones explained: “It’s like, well, there’s been an economic downturn that’s driven this price drop, which means that it’s actually more profitable to buy this than to install this solar panel.”
The Australian Solar Council has also said that solar panels are more affordable than ever, and that this is due to the fact solar panels only cost around $5 per kW.
If you’re an individual who’s not making much money, the price drops even further, as the AUS Solar Energy Market Report shows that “the average cost of PV for 2016/17 was $3.62 per kWh, up from $3 per kWh in 2015/16”.
The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has also stated that the average cost for solar in Australia is now $2.97 per kWh and that the solar market is now profitable for all levels of customers.
The fact that a solar system can be built for around a dollar per kWh means that solar power is now a viable investment.
It’s Not All About Cost Solar is not the only way to get electricity from the sun.
The amount of energy that is generated from solar is not all that different to other forms of energy, such as wind and hydro power.
The difference is that solar is generated entirely off the grid.
This means that the amount of power generated by solar is much more variable and is much less expensive to buy.
For those who want to install solar panels, there are some important things to keep in mind.
Firstly, a lot of people are still paying more than $30 per kilometre (kM) for solar power that is typically only available to those in urban areas.
The ABC’s Kate MacKenzie explained this to the ABC: “There are people who can’t afford the upfront costs of the grid system, and the cost to the grid operator.
That is one of those things you can just go, ‘Oh, yeah, well there’s a lot more of this out there than I know what to do with’.” Secondly, solar panels typically require a lot less maintenance than other forms.
“I’d rather buy solar panels than to have them sit in a shed or have them leak or rust or something that will go out and cost me money,” said Peter Norgard, director of solar and energy for the Australian Solar Association.
And thirdly, solar is typically installed in rural areas, where there is a lack of land to build solar panels on.
In rural areas where there are not enough people to install panels, the cost may be much higher, so a solar power system may not be the best option for most people.
The price of solar may also fluctuate a lot depending on the weather.
But with these important factors in mind, it is likely that the drop in solar prices will continue, as solar panels will continue to become cheaper.
There are a few other reasons why people are also getting cheaper solar panels this year.
Australia’s solar industry is experiencing a huge increase in the number of projects that have been approved.
A total of 431 projects were awarded last year.
Of those projects, around 60% were solar projects.
The solar industry has been growing at a fast rate in recent years, with projects like this one in South Australia