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A Rooftop Slowdown in Australia is killing its Solar Industry

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Declining Rooftop Installations in Australia

The new solar installations in Australia is declining. There is a major decline in the rooftop installations in Australia. As a result the country is facing a lot of job cuts in this sector. Basically the current government of Australia can be blamed for its deteriorating condition. Rooftop solar is gaining traction all around the globe not only because of its green nature but also the fact that electricity tariffs are on a rising spree. With storage cost and technology destined to improve in the coming years, a rooftop PV solar system could be the answer to increasing cost of traditional power.

The country’s solar installations flourished during 2010 and 2011 as can be seen from the graph below, driven by its attractive state feed in tariffs also known as the solar bonus scheme or solar credits. As a result of this boom, capacity limits were being reached and most of the state solar subsidy schemes were withdrawn. In 2007 the government set that 20% of Australia’s electricity supply, would come from renewable energy sources by 2020 through the national Renewable Energy Target (RET) scheme.

“The sunburnt country has burnt its solar industry,” Mr Grimes, chief executive of the Australian Solar Council said. “Thousands of jobs have been lost and hundreds of small businesses have closed their doors.” – SMH

australia solar

Clean Energy Regulator

However currently, the government has not been supportive of solar policies in Australia, with no RE targets beyond 2020. This coupled with the wrapping up of generous solar schemes, led to declining number of solar installations lowest in the last 6-7 years. As per Australia’s Coalition’s Direct Action Plan, the Government was supposed to introduce a range of initiatives to boost renewable energy usage in Australian homes and communities, including an investment of $100 million annually for one million new solar energy homes by 2020.

Our last article on Australian solar market highlighted the fact that the country was ready to investigate against dumping of Chinese solar panels into the Australian solar market. It must be noted here that Australia does not manufacture any major raw materials or components such as polysilicon or solar wafers and hence it is pertinent for the country’s solar industry to import major ingredients. Australia has got one of the highest per capita emissions of GHG in the world of more than tons per year. However instead of fighting climate change actively, the government thought of taking a backward step by indirectly raising the cost of installing and using solar power.

Australia receives the highest solar radiation, but has been using very little of its vast resources. Read more about Australia’s solar policies here.


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

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