by Staff Writers
Sydney, Australia (SPX) Apr 17, 2012
Regional and lower-income Australians are leading the charge towards solar power as a way to address rising power bills, according to new data.
Australia's top solar postcode at the end of 2011 was Dubbo in NSW, where more than a quarter of houses (28 per cent) have now installed solar power. Close on its heels was Caloundra in Queensland, where more than 27 per cent of homes have now gone solar.
Clean Energy Council acting Chief Executive Kane Thornton said although the top solar postcode was in NSW, it was Queensland and South Australia that dominated the top 20 postcodes across the country.
"As well as being the sunshine state, the Queensland Government's solar scheme is the most generous in the country, while homeowners in South Australia rushed to install solar power systems in 2011 before the government reduced its support program," Mr Thornton said.
The official data comes from the Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator, a statutory authority established by the Federal Government. It shows that while inner-city suburbs often have some of the lowest rates of solar installation, those in regional areas and lower-income suburbs, retirement belts and some coastal regions have embraced solar in the highest numbers.
Mr Thornton said this suggested those most exposed to rising power bills were more likely to invest in a solar system.
"With the price of panels now about a third what it was just three years ago, many people see solar power as a way to save on their energy bills as well as do something for the environment," he said.
"We now have more than half a million solar power systems in Australia, but really we are just in the early stages of tapping in to the power of this technology. Solar panels are fast becoming the Hills Hoist of the 21st Century."
Clean Energy Council
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US, India setting up $125 mn clean energy centre
Washington (IANS) Apr 17, 2012
In a significant development in the quest for clean energy, three top research institutions each in India and the United States have joined hands to form three consortia that will make up the $125 million US-India Joint Clean Energy Research and Development Centre (JCERDC). These consortia, led in the US by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the University of Florida, and Law ... read more