Why Should I Go Solar In 2019?

Why Should I Go Solar In 2019?

QLD Govt Solar and Battery Grant and Interest Free Loan Header Image

Many of us make New Year’s Resolutions that we have difficulty keeping.

Lose 5 kilos.

Go back and study for our dream jobs.

Save more money.

 

Well, what if we could help you keep that last resolution in 2019 by going solar!?

 

Going solar gives you the opportunity to save money, support the environment and have the assurance you are bringing the New Year in on the right foot. So to kick off your year right, we’ve gone ahead and outlined some of the best reasons why you should go solar in 2019.

Harness free energy for your home

Unlike your energy company – the sun won’t send you a bill for hundreds of dollars every quarter. The sun is freely emitting the valuable energy that can power your home. With 2019 comes some of the warmest days of Summer, which means the use of our fans and air conditioners goes through – and so do our power bills! Even if you’ve lived in your home for many years, it can be hard to predict what your bill will be this quarter.

Beyond simply using your air conditioner more, your children are all a year older, the cost of energy has changed and so have many of your other habits around the home.

However, even just a small, quality 4kW system (such as Sunpower or Q-Cells panels with a Fronius inverter) could have you saving $890 per year on energy costs. Combine this with the power of sending any of your excess energy back to the grid for a further credit – you can negate almost all of your previous energy spend and do your bit for the environment.

 

You can read more about rebates and feed in tariffs for solar energy systems here.

 

Switching to solar is so in right now

When you choose to go solar in 2019 – you are certainly not alone! From high profile Australian organisations such as Australia Zoo, PCYC and UnitingCare through to the 1,500 everyday Australian families we installed for in 2018; this technology is for everyone! The price of modules has dropped 75% in the past five years alone due to widespread popularity and more refined designs.  More than 9,500 panels are installed here in Australia each and every day – so make sure you’re one of the next to join them in 2019.

Get paid by the government to go solar

The Federal Government has long recognized the changing tide of energy consumption and the need for renewable energy sources. The Government offers incentives such as Small-scale technology certificates (STCs) and feed in tariffs (FIT).  The amount of small scale technology certificates that will accompany the installation of your solar PV system will depend on the generated solar power and how it offsets your electricity consumption over its lifespan. Usually, for a 5kW system, you will be granted 103 STC’s, valuing at $38 each, equating to an immediate discount of up to $3,708.  These certificates imitate rebates, but instead will be given to your solar system supplier and can cover 20%-30% of the systems cost. You will not need to pay this large amount up front, and then wait to be reimbursed at a later date – which is a huge bonus.

Even the State Governments are now getting on board to contribute! As of the time of writing this article in January 2019, both the Queensland and Victorian Governments have Solar and Solar Battery Schemes in place that are subsidizing or providing interest free loans for the installation of solar.

Oh, and did we mention your power company will pay you as well?

Keep in mind that you may also be qualified, depending on the excess electricity you supply to the grid, for reimbursement from your electricity company. If you go solar, you can receive up to 10 cents per extra kWh that you do not use for your own personal electrical needs. This energy is instead sent back to the energy grid for public consumption, and you are credited the amount on your next bill.  There is a high probability that your already cut down electricity bill will also include compensation for the energy you produced.

Increase the value of your home

Stepping into 2019 brings even more technological advances in home innovation. Whether you are considering selling your home in the next few years or want your house to age gracefully and hold up competitively in future markets – solar panels have evolved beyond being environmentally sustainable eyesores and morphed into a sleek exterior addition to your home. Newer panels have higher wattage per panel, meaning you need less on your roof. They also look better, with a choice of colour between blue and black and often lasting longer before fading. Over 19% of Australian homeowners have now installed a solar power system. It is estimated that for each kW installed, your home increases by $6000 in value. This means that if you install a standard 5kW system, this decision can boost your eventual sale value by $30,000.  People will flock to buy your home with the added bonus of low energy bills without the hassle of having to save for or install them themselves. Your home may not stay on the market long, since it is 20% more likely that a home with solar panels will sell – and sell fast!

So, why should I go solar in 2019 exactly?

Take your pick! We know the process of switching from traditional energy sources to solar power can seem a daunting task – but the numerous long term effects of switching to a solar powered lifestyle can create a huge impact financially. GEM Energy is the trusted authority when it comes to solar energy for residential and commercial application in Australia. We’ll give you the best advice on making your solar energy system work for you and provide you the best return on your investment. Start your 2019 off right and give us a call on 1300 969 471 or get a quote today.

Jack Hooper’s Insightful Visit to Hanwha Q CELLS in Korea

Jack Hooper’s Insightful Visit to Hanwha Q CELLS in Korea

Jack Hooper’s Insightful Visit to Hanwha Q CELLS in Korea

Jack Hooper at Hanwha Q CELLS Manufacturing in Korea

We’re serious about delivering quality products to our clients.

As an award-winning company and one of the largest producers of solar panels in the world, you may have heard of or even own Hanwha Q CELLS solar panels. The company is world-renowned for their dedication to quality, a trait which GEM Energy shares and that has fostered a great partnership over the years. After all, the Q in Q CELLS stands for quality.

In October 2018, our CEO, Jack Hooper, visited the company’s new state of the art manufacturing facility in Seoul, Korea and we’ve decided to transparently share his process, feedback and the conclusions he drew post-inspection of the facility.

 

The History of Q CELLS

Q CELLS have long been a leader in the solar panel manufacturing industry, this year winning the Top Brand PV Seal in Australia for the third consecutive year in a row, and due to their high-quality bill of materials and best in class manufacturing facilities, Q CELLS products have continued to be some of GEM Energy’s preferred products. Historically, Q CELLS products have been renowned for their exceptional German manufacturing process, leading technological breakthroughs and proven performance in the field. When Q CELLS were acquired by the Hanwha corporation in 2012 it was announced that manufacturing would begin in Korea and China. Many expected a decline in the prestige and quality of the product, which is simply not the case.

Hanwha and Q CELLS held an event in Seoul, Korea for their top customers globally and as GEM Energy are among these companies, we had the privilege of being invited to inspect the manufacturing process and technology behind the new Q CELLS Q PEAK DUO 325w solar panel.

 

Our Demonstrable Dedication to Quality

GEM Energy takes quality assurance very seriously and this inspection of the facility and the new technologies behind the Q PEAK DUO demonstrates our dedication to ensuring that we supply our customers with only the best products on the market. We go further than looking at spec sheets, we visually inspect the manufacturing and R&D centres of our major partners.

In 2018, the GEM management staff conducted inspections for the Inverter manufacturing facilities of SolarEdge in Israel, Fronius in Austria and Huawei in China. We’ve also inspected Solar Panel manufacturing plants of Q CELLS in Korea, the Sumec Phono Solar facility in China and will be visiting the Canadian Solar factory in China in November 2018 to spend 2 days inspecting the solar cell manufacturing, module manufacturing and to spend time with the Canadian Solar engineers to discuss key product differences and the roadmap for future technologies.

Jack’s Visit To The New Facility

This trip provided Jack with an opportunity to inspect the new Q CELLS manufacturing site where he was able to assess the latest Q CELLS solar modules and the manufacturing process behind them. He was able to see and understand what goes into the creation of these products very closely, constantly evaluating the products to ensure they meet GEM Energy’s high standards. The state of the art technology and excellent personnel at the new facility left a great impression on Jack, thus his feedback from the visit was incredibly positive.

Jack is obviously limited to exactly what he can share with about the factory but the precision, cleanliness and efficiency of the plant has been most impressive.

Hanwha Q CELLS Module Production Plant

The Conclusion?

Jacks conclusion is that Q CELLS continue to set the benchmark for other manufacturers on delivering leading-edge technology and value for money. Our confidence in the brand has absolutely been maintained if not strengthened by the visit and we’re delighted by the fact that we can trust these panels on Aussie homes and businesses. This confidence is furthered by the fact that Hanwha is one of Korea’s biggest and financially strong companies, which confirms that they are a bankable brand that is here to support warranties in the long term.

If you have any questions about the Q CELLS solar panels or would like more information, please contact us at info@gemenergy.com.au

Look No Further. Get Started Today. 

The Top Countries Moving Towards Renewable Energy

The Top Countries Moving Towards Renewable Energy

A bird’s eye view of a large solar energy farm with solar panels covering many of the hills

With non-renewable fossil fuel supplies running out and the world’s energy needs increasing, many countries are looking at alternative ways to produce sustainable energy. One of the top contenders for renewable energy is solar power, which is available all over the planet.

Currently, solar power plants use two types of technology to harness the sun’s energy:

  • Photovoltaic – uses the solar panels and is the cheapest and most popular method.
  • Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) – uses solar thermal energy from large mirrors or lenses to make steam, which is then converted to electricity using a turbine.

Photovoltaic (PV) Systems

The photovoltaic system has gone from a niche market of small-scale applications in 1992 to the cheapest and most-often used technology for generating solar energy. China, the United States, and India were the top three installers of PV systems, while Honduras has the capacity to produce 12.5% of its electricity needs using PV systems.

Concentrated Solar Power (CSP)

Spain and the United States are the biggest users of Concentrated Solar Power, with the Ivanpah Solar Power Facility in California being the biggest facility in the world. However, the technology can’t compete with the reduced operating costs and huge growth of photovoltaic systems in recent years.

China

With its huge population and recent increased need for energy, it’s not surprising that China is the biggest installer of photovoltaic and CSP systems. Solar power is one of the largest industries in China with three of the top four PV power stations, and the world’s biggest in Tengger Desert Solar Park.

United States

The United States has some of the world’s largest solar power stations, as well a high number of rooftop solar panel installations. The industry has seen rapid growth in recent years with the decreasing costs of installations and components. At the end of 2017, the U.S had over 50 GW of installed solar capacity and was in the top four countries for the most solar PV installed.

India

In 2017, India added 9,255 MW of solar power to its solar program, with another 9,627 MW of solar projects under development, making them the third largest solar power producer in the world. The Indian government’s goal is to reach 100 GW of installed solar capacity by 2022. Several of India’s large grid-scale solar parks are among the world’s largest.

Japan

Japan is the world’s biggest manufacturer of solar panels, and is the second on the list of countries with the most solar PV installed. It currently produces 2.5% of its electricity needs using solar power.

Australia

Here in Australia, we’re in the top ten for solar PV installations and CSP capacities. We have over 7,803 megawatts (MW) of installed photovoltaic (PV) solar power, with the largest solar power station being Nyngan Solar Plant, which was also the largest in the southern hemisphere when completed. Our rooftop solar panel industry is also growing rapidly.

Israel

Since there is no oil in Israel, finding an alternative source of energy is a national priority. This quest, and Israel’s plentiful sunshine, has advanced their solar technology to be almost cost-competitive with non-renewable fossil fuels, and they’re working with the rest of the world to move solar technology forward.

Leading the Way in Solar Power Solutions

GEM Energy is Australia’s leading provider of turn-key renewable energy solutions. Call us on 1300 969 471 or enquire online about switching to clean, free solar power.

VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme: New Policy Set To Save Victorians Up To 50% On A New Solar Energy System

VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme: New Policy Set To Save Victorians Up To 50% On A New Solar Energy System

Victoria Solar Energy Rebate

Victorian Government Solar Homes Scheme – It’s Here

VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme: New Policy Set To Save Victorians Up To 50% On A New Solar Energy System

Victorians – you have just hit the solar jackpot! The Victoria Government ‘Solar Homes’ Scheme, a new policy set to save your household up to $2,225 on a 4kW solar energy system, has now been released following an exciting media release from the Victorian Government just a few days ago. The aim of the scheme is to put solar panels on 650,000 rooves over 10 years, which is an estimated renewable energy investment of $1.24 billion. Consequently, there will be a tremendous rush for solar installation in Victoria as citizens look to claim on this incredible incentive. The document claims that an average 4kW system could save around $890 a year on energy costs which will represent an incredible easement of the energy costs for Victorian households. At an average cost of $4,450 (after STCs) for a 4kW solar system, the payback period (the time it takes for your savings on electricity to pay off the cost of your system) is just 3 years. Though the rebate equals a 50% copayment for a 4kW system, that certainly won’t (and shouldn’t!) stop you from getting a bigger system. From our experience installing hundreds of systems across Victoria, most families benefit more from a 6.5kW system. For a larger system under the VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme, you would still receive the full $2,225 Solar Homes subsidy, keeping your total power bill lower AND only increasing your payback period minutely.

Adding In The Federal Rebate And Reduced Solar Cost Even Further!

Currently in Australia, the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES – widely known as ‘The Solar Rebate‘) provides Small-scale Technology Certificates (or STCs), which lowers the total cost of a rooftop solar installation for your home. At the moment in Melbourne, this reduces the cost of solar by around $560 per kilowatt of solar panels. The figure from the Victorian Government of $4,450 for a 4-kilowatt system, is after STCs have reduced the system price. This means the Government have essentially paid TWO-THIRDS of your solar system and installation for you (1/3 from the Federal Government and 1/3 from the Victorian Government).

Read more about rebates

Victorian Solar Energy Savings Rebate Graph

System cost after STCs and the VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme Rebate (Credit: Solar Quotes)

And the best news yet – many of you will be eligible RIGHT NOW

Victorian households are eligible to receive a Solar Homes Scheme rebate if the applicant:

  • has a combined household income of less than $180,000 per annum before tax (the based on the most recent tax assessment notices for the home owners will suffice)
  • is an owner-occupier of a home valued at under $3,000,000 (a copy of a recent Council rates notice will be required)
  • the household does not already have a solar panel system installed
  • chooses a Clean Energy Council (CEC) Approved Product (for solar panels) and uses a CEC Accredited Installer
  • chooses a product that is on the Clean Energy Regulator’s “Register of approved solar hot water heaters” (for Solar hot water)
  • has had an eligible solar panel system installed on or after 19 August 2018, and
  • engages an installer who can provide a statement that they have not received a WorkSafe infringement notice in the past three years.”

A Wise Decision

The Victorian Government policy requires that rebates under the VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme can only be claimed when the system is installed by accredited solar installers who use approved hardware and have a clean history. In doing this, the Victorian Government is protecting the citizens who are rushing to pick their installer, ensuring that the work is done by professionals and to the highest standards – not the cheapest cost. Here at GEM Energy, we are CEC Approved Retailers AND Installers – with a stellar record for quality and system life. We have a dedicated in-house engineering team, system monitoring expert and Quality Assurance Officer. We have ISO 9001:2015 Certification, which is a voluntary certification that demonstrates our commitment to quality and performance of your system at all times.

Look no further than GEM Energy’s award-winning team for your install under the VIC Govt Solar Homes Scheme and get in quick while this incredible policy is active. Give us a call on 1300 969 471 or click below to get a quote today.

 

Interested in solar for your home or business?

Smart Energy Council: “Energy Conscious Australians Should Put Pressure on the NEG”

Smart Energy Council: “Energy Conscious Australians Should Put Pressure on the NEG”

Smart Energy Council NEG

Credit: Smart Energy Council

Smart Energy Council: “Energy Conscious Australians Should Put Pressure on the NEG”

About a month ago we commented on the impact of the Nation Energy Guarantee (NEG) on the renewable energy movement – namely, that it is a policy that will compromise aspects of the solar industry, such as the Renewable Energy Target (RET) rebate scheme, which have greatly contributed to the energy independence of hundreds of thousands of Australians. With the NEG quickly gaining traction, the Smart Energy Council (SEC) is now urging people to put pressure on the policy and stand up for the renewable energy movement – and we too would like to provide our comment on the impending changes.

Renewables Are Cheaper Than Coal

The solar industry is booming, saving many Australians thousands of dollars every year on the cost of their energy bills and creating a cleaner environment for our future generations. Over 2 million Australian families are enjoying the benefits of having a solar energy system installed at their home. However, many more millions of Australians may miss out once the RET rebate is removed with the introduction of the NEG. With recent energy policy, such as the Californian 2020 policy, requiring that newly built homes must have solar energy systems installed and British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta’s comments to The Guardian providing evidence that renewable energy is now cheaper than coal – it is clear that the world is moving towards renewable energy systems. We cannot allow Australia to be left behind. The impact of this will simply cost Australians more, whilst also hindering the progression of our country as a modern, technologically advanced nation.

The Impact

While the NEG claims to simply provide a reliable energy supply on top of an existing renewable energy supply, the policy seems to overlook the extent to which the RET rebate is responsible for the growth of the solar industry. This is almost certain to impact the rate of installation in Australian households. The government have said that subsidies for renewable energy systems are no longer necessary as the industry is thriving. The RET is responsible for that growth, as it has supported Australians to install renewable energy systems and the benefits of it are felt by individuals and communities. It’s becoming clearer that the proposed NEG will not include the RET’s system of what amounts to a rebate on renewable energy installations for households and businesses.

Take Action

The Smart Energy Council is calling on environmentally-conscious citizens to take preventative action and put pressure on the NEG. In around two weeks the States and Territories will decide the future of the renewable energy industry, most likely locking in this highly problematic policy. If you’re with us and believe the NEG will hurt more than it will help, you can show your support by emailing Premiers and Ministers by simply clicking this link: http://smartenergy.good.do/saverenewables/emailministers/.

We hope you will take action by contacting your MPs today – and encourage your friends and family to do the same. To take advantage of the RET rebate while it does last, be sure to contact us at 1300 969 471 or get a quote for your home or business at https://gemenergy.wpengine.com/get-a-quote/.

 

The NEG is coming. Here is what you can do to future proof your home or business.

The NEG is coming. Here is what you can do to future proof your home or business.

Residential Solar Roof

The NEG is coming. Here is what you can do to future proof your home or business.

You may have noticed an increased amount of solar installations in your neighborhood over the past few months. That’s because the solar industry is booming and producing record numbers. But with the proposed National Energy Guarantee policy, set to to succeed the Renewable Energy Target (RET) policy, some uncertainty as to the future of the renewable energy industry has struck the market. Here is our take on renewable energy supply projections, new policies and what you can do to guarantee your home or business is future proofed.

According to the latest information from the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), renewable energy is forecast to supply one-third of Australians’ energy requirements by 2020. This represents rapid growth in the industry as only half that amount was supplied by renewable energy in 2015. May was a record month for rooftop solar installation with almost 19,000 rooftop solar PV systems being installed, which produced 19.9 per cent of consumed energy and saved 2.4 million tonnes of CO2 pollution over the month (the equivalent of taking 9.2 million cars off the road). Now 2 million Australian families have reduced their energy bills and shown their support for the renewable energy movement by installing solar energy systems on their homes.

Solar advocates from organizations such as Solar Citizens, the Clean Energy Council & the Smart Energy Council have recently expressed concern for the impact that the proposed National Energy Guarantee (NEG) policy will have on this thriving movement. Green Energy Markets Director Tristan Edis & Smart Energy Council CEO John Grimes have both declared their dissatisfaction for the NEG’s emissions targets, which, while they are in line with international commitments, are seen to be unambitious. The aforementioned 2020 renewable energy supply target stands strong despite this as it is based on solar and wind farms already under construction or contracted and stable residential installation rates.

Claims have been made that the NEG overlooks the extent to which the RET is responsible for the solar industry’s growth and may impact household’s rate of installation – The government have said that subsidies for renewable energy systems are no longer necessary as the industry is thriving. But this seems to overlook the extent to which the RET is responsible for that growth, as it has supported Australians to install renewable energy systems, the benefits of which are felt by individuals and communities. It’s becoming clearer that the proposed NEG will not include the RET’s system of what amounts to a rebate on renewable energy installations for households and businesses.

Learn more about the RET rebates.

The exact impacts of the NEG are unforeseeable at this stage, though there are signs that solar installation incentives may change and impact Australian’s ability to go solar. Our hopes are that Australians will still be seen as renewable energy leaders, reaching record emissions and supply targets and continuing to reap the benefits that solar energy systems produce. The best thing you can do to future proof your home or business is to claim the RET rebate with us while it still lasts.

 

See GEM Energy’s range of solar energy solutions or enquire now.