Money trail backs the clean energy revolution  

Posted by Big Gav in , ,

The SMH has an article on the solar power boom sweeping across Australia's rooftops - Money trail backs the clean energy revolution.

Here's a bright idea: what if, instead of paying for solar panels to keep your electricity bills down, you asked a solar company to put them on your roof for free, then paid them back with excess energy that you didn't need?

Well, it's already happening. Solar panel installation with no upfront payments, paid off over several years from the money saved out of your power bills, began in Australia almost two years ago. In a few years, it is likely that companies will be competing with each other to pay you for the privilege of using your roof to generate electricity for your home.

If that sounds fanciful, bear in mind that a decade ago there were just a few hundred working solar-powered home in the country, run mostly at significant personal expense by enthusiasts. By the end of last year, 936,810 solar systems were installed, and the number cruised past 1 million earlier this year.

Slowly but surely, renewable energy is eating into the business model of the fossil-fuel-burning energy generators. Those in the industry liken it to the effect the internet is having on publishing: disrupting revenue, overturning tradition and, literally, tilting the balance of power in favour of the customer, rather than big corporations.

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