Solar rooftop. Author: Michael Coghlan. License: Creative Commons.
The Essential Services Commission of South Australia (ESCOSA) is seeking views on a draft proposal to cease setting the minimum solar power sale rates under the retailer feed-in tariff (R-FiT) from 2017.
ESCOSA has been determining the regulated minimum R-FiT each year since 2012. Its plan to end that practice is based on the view that “the market structures that facilitate electricity retail competition are sound and that continued regulation of the minimum R-FiT may inhibit competition in the future, to the detriment of consumers.”
If the proposal is accepted the R-FiT will be set by retailers “reflecting the long term benefit that retailers receive from energy exported by solar customers”.
Comments from stakeholders on the degree of competition for solar customers and ESCOSA's proposed methodology are welcome by September 9, 2016.
In recent weeks, there have been huge spikes in power prices in the Australian state. A report by the Melbourne Energy Institute says that the crisis was due to the lack of competition in the South Australian energy market.