Solar and Renewable Energy
Renewable energy is generated from natural resources, such as sunlight, wind, geothermal and tides. The term ‘renewable’ means that is it naturally replenished on a human timescale from the Earth.
Generally speaking, renewable energy sources produce less greenhouse gas emissions when compared to conventional power supplies (e.g. energy sourced from brown coal) and can help to reduce energy bills, particularly for homeowners and businesses.
On 1 July 2019, the Victorian Government announced a new minimum single-rate feed-in tariff for excess solar generation of 12 cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh), slightly higher than the previous rate for 2018-19 (9.9 c/kWh). This is due to the growth of solar generation in Victoria and other States and the lower value of energy at the times of the day when solar systems are generating power.
There is also a new time-varying feed-in tariff, where the price paid for surplus electricity changes through the day to reflect changes in demand at different times. This tariff has a lower rate during off-peak times (9.9 c/kWh), a slightly higher rate during shoulder hours (11.6 c/kWh) and a significantly higher rate during peak hours (14.6 c/kWh). Retailers may offer different packages and terms and conditions.
What Council is doing
Council is committed to solar power and clean energy as part of meeting its zero net emissions target by 2025. In 2019 Council adopted its Toward Zero Emissions Plan 2019-2023 (3MB) which sets out Council's future renewable energy priorities to progress toward this target.
Council has installed solar power on more than 60 of its buildings. Solar power systems on Council’s facilities range in size from 1kW (kilowatt) to 99.84kW.
At December 2019, Council had over 570kW of solar power installed on its buildings, with another 1744kW scheduled for installation in 2020.
What you can do
Installing solar power helps to:
- Save money by supplying some or all of your daytime electricity use
- Reduce pressure on the electricity grid, particularly in peak times such as heatwaves, reducing the risk of power outages
- Reduce pollution and our reliance on coal
With potential changes to feed in tariffs over time, installing solar isn’t always going to make you money. Installing solar power is about saving money, particularly by producing the electricity that you would use during the day.
Before installing solar, you should first reduce your energy usage, to minimise the size and cost of the system that you need. Visit the Frankston City Council Saving Energy page for energy saving tips.
For advice on solar power, including a referral service to trusted and reputable suppliers, contact the Australian Energy Foundation (AEF). Council has partnered with the AEF to provide this free and independent service to local residents (see Related Links below).
The Victorian Government currently has a rebate of up to a maximum of $1888 for home solar PV systems installed in 2020; this aims to help Victorian households cut their electricity bills. For more information visit Solar Victoria under Related Links on this page.
The Clean Energy Council has some great information and resources when it comes to solar power and renewable energy technologies across Australia.
If you are considering installing solar power, the Clean Energy Council has developed guides specifically for householders and businesses/industry to help you make a decision (available in Related Links). This website also contains a page of frequently asked questions, a map of accredited installers to help you find a solar provider and much more.
To get the best deal on your energy bills, visit the Victorian Government’s independent website Victorian Energy Compare, which also enables you to compare electricity offers for solar (see Related Links).
If you have concerns with your solar power installation, contact:
Consumer Affairs Victoria
P. 1300 558 181
If you have issue with your energy retailer, contact:
Energy and Water Ombudsman Victoria
P. 1800 500 509
Solar and Trees
If you have shading from trees, look at positioning your solar panels where they get the least amount of shade, and preferably no afternoon shade. Remember the saying "move the path, not the tree" - the same goes for solar panels.
Trees offer a lot of value to the landscape and community, as well as reducing your cooling bill in summer and combatting the urban heat island effect. Solar panels should be positioned so as to not require pruning of the tree.
Not everyone has the opportunity to invest in their own solar power system or wind turbine, but by signing up to buy GreenPower through your electricity retailer, you can increase the proportion of renewable energy, purchased on your behalf, that enters the supply network.
Learn more about GreenPower at their website or ask your electricity retailer.
For more information contact
Frankston City Council
PO Box 490
30 Davey Street
Frankston VIC 3199
P. 1300 322 322
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