Australia Installs Record Number of Solar Panels

Xinhua – Australians installed a record number of rooftop solar panels in 2020 according to the country’s national science agency.

The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) on Thursday revealed that more than 362,000 rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) panels were installed across Australia under the federal government’s Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme in 2020.

It marks a 28 percent increase from 2019 when 283,991 PV panels were installed.

The Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme creates a financial incentive for individuals and small businesses that install solar panels.

Larry Marshall, the chief executive of the CSIRO, said the uptake of PV panels proved Australians had a strong appetite for science-led innovation.

“CSIRO has analyzed and projected energy futures for more than two decades, and over that time we have accurately forecast and tracked the reduction in the cost of renewables, and the development of battery storage options, including our own UltraBattery,” he said in a media release.

New South Wales (NSW) installed more solar PV systems than any other state in 2020 with 108,922 followed by Queensland and Victoria.

According to the Clean Energy Regulator, one in four Australian homes have installed rooftop solar systems by the end of last year.

“The solar PV installation data shows how quickly PV systems have been taken up across Australia and the increasing size of the PV arrays,” CSIRO Senior Experimental Scientist Michael Ambrose said.

“Australia is one of the sunniest places on the planet. We lead the world in PV capacity on a per capita basis at 591 watts per person which is almost eight times the worldwide average.”