Grid Connected Renewable Energy
It is interesting to note the difference in the amount of grid connected renewable energy between Victoria and NSW.
Grid connected renewable energy is where solar panels, wind turbines or some other form of renewable energy is connected directly to the power grid through a special inverter. The advantage is that there are no batteries involved and that the owner can sell power back to the power company.
This technology has been commonplace in Japan and the US for quite some time and is starting to be used more in Australia. Unfortunately Victoria is lagging behind. Recent figures indicate that while NSW has over 200 kilowatts of installed grid interactive solar with another 140 kW coming on line soon and a further 650 kW included in the Olympic village. Victoria has about 20 kW of grid connected solar installed and not much more in the pipeline.
While some of the power utilities actively promote the installation of grid connected systems most of the Victorian utilities seem to be having trouble realising we are living in the late 20th century and there are options other than brown coal available for generating power.
NSW has a Green Power scheme where consumers can pay a slightly higher tariff to buy power generated by renewable sources. The extra money is put back into expanding the amount of renewable input to the power grid. There are moves to try and get such a scheme working in Victoria. Then all we need is a lot more grid connected systems.