Photo Voltaic Economics In Victoria

We recently invested in a basic 1500WPV array on our roof in Victoria, Australia. Due to generous rebates and a premium feed-in tariff (basically middle class welfare) we had a 1.5kw grid connected array installed on our roof for $2900 (AND it was 5% down, 12 monthly payments interest free, FREE money).

It seems to be working out as a good investment.

From my spreadsheet :

Meter Read 08/09/2011 (roughly one billing cycle)

Total Generated 348 kwh
Exported 123 kwh
Consumed 225 kwh

Peak Tariff c/kwh 26.367 $59.32575 (this is saving because of what we did not buy from the grid)
Off Peak Tariff 15.763 (sun doesn’t shine when OP rate applies)

Premium FIT c/kwh 66c $81.18
Total Credit $140

This is the actual reading off the meter :
03 Imported Total 723
04 Imported Peak 476
05 ??? 2
06 Imported Off Peak 247
13 Exported Total 123
14 Exported Peak 82
16 Exported Off Peak 41

    My calculations

Total Consumed 948 kwh
Old Tariff 22.869 c/kwh
Old Cost $216

New Cost $83

    Net saving $133

There is a slight difference between the top ‘Total Credit’ figure and the ‘Net Saving’. I put this down to discrepancy (or efficiency losses) between what the inverter reports and what is metered. Probably worth keeping an eye on though as it could be a skim by the distributor.

So we are saving $133 on this quarterly bill, and this is winter, it will be more during the sun months. The depreciation on the plant is estimated at 5% so about $150 per year. I extrapolate that we will generate only 1.5 times the winter rate so lets say we will save $200 in the spring/summer quarters.

By my calcs the return on investment is about net $666, subtract depreciation and we are around $400. So conservatively, about 13.8% return on investment. This will only improve as energy prices rise.

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