Solar means test scrapped, new solar policy in the spotlight

Conergy, a global leader in the manufacture and distribution of renewable systems, has welcomed news that the Rudd Government's means test on solar panel rebates has been scrapped after a campaign led by Conergy and a number of other major solar companies.

National: Conergy, a global leader in the manufacture and distribution of renewable systems, has welcomed news that the Rudd Government's means test on solar panel rebates has been scrapped after a campaign led by Conergy and a number of other major solar companies.


"We are glad that the public pressure generated through our activities has helped Minister Garrett and others to see that the means test was a discriminatory policy mechanism which didn't value the matching investment by higher income groups," Conergy's Managing Director Rodger Meads said.

"We have argued that the policy was too hasty in its introduction and didn't allow for consultation with the industry.

"Conergy campaigned strongly after the solar means test decision arising from the budget and sought a removal of the means test, real industry certainty and a proper process of consultation for this pivotal industry," said Mr Meads.

"We congratulate the Federal Government for hearing this message and removing the means test, however we do have reservations about this new policy" Mr Meads said.

"It is important to note the $7,500 amount is subject to change due to other legislative controls that Government has. REC's prices can vary up or down and they have gone down in the past.

"The move by Government to head toward a market-oriented mechanism was driven by Conergy and we strongly believe that there should not be a cap on the size of the energy system. We're pleased the program includes all small generation technologies like solar PV, small wind, etc.", said Mr Meads.

"Our original recommendation of a Gross National Feed-in Tariff (FIT) is still the most effective mechanism for deploying larger volumes of renewable energy technology to all consumers and for driving down the price to grid parity.

"Conergy is currently reviewing the details of the Solar Credits Program announced today and will comment further once we have a conducted rigorous assessment of it.

"The implementation date of mid 2009 allows time for the Government to fulfill their promise of fully consulting with our industry to ensure these measures actually support consumers, the environment and our industry, and we look forward to this outcome", Mr Meads said.

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