NSW state government rolls out new scheme on energy renewables

When capturing the sun's energy, there can be too much of a good thing. Peak demand causes grid stability issues. On the hottest days when we have multiple afternoons of heat in a row, that's where household batteries come in. They can be connected to form something called a virtual power plant and feed energy to the grid in exchange for payment. We're moving from a system of, you know, three or four coal-fired power plants that provide most of the base load power to literally many power stations on the top of every house. Now, the state government is bringing in a scheme aimed at sparking a higher uptake. Household batteries typically start at $10,000. Under the program, households will get a discount of between 1600 and 2400 dollars, depending on the size of the battery. Southern Sydney resident Carmela Savoca says it's enough to get her over the line. I was concerned about the cost and how long it would take to pay it off. The repayment time can vary wildly from 10 years pay back right down to about six year payback that that's best case. If everything doesn't line up, that payback can stretch out for over 20 years. Ausgrid, Essential Energy and Endeavour Energy have announced 2 way tariffs, meaning households will be penalized for exporting solar energy during the middle of the day. That's a really heavy-handed, blunt approach. They're leading with the stick rather than the carrot until enough renewable generation and storage is in the system. The government is paying Origin Energy to keep the states largest coal-fired power plant firing beyond its scheduled retirement next year. The O'farrell government soldering a decade ago for $50 million. Now it could cost taxpayers 9 times that to keep it going. I think it was a terrible deal for taxpayers. The solar incentives begin in November.

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