It’s no secret that interest in commercial PV is growing amongst both businesses and government organisations. If you’re banking on reducing the upfront cost of a large installation by creating STCs, it pays to do your homework first.
If you are preparing a solar PV proposal that may incorporate more than 100kW for a single customer, you should not automatically assume that your project will be eligible for STCs.
Best practice is to contact the Clean Energy Regulator before you finalise the design and the price. Each proposal is assessed on a case-by-case basis, but here are three key things to keep in mind:
A business can choose to install up to 100kW in a single complete installation and claim STCs. If they see the benefits of this first system and later choose to purchase and install additional capacity for their business, they can.
Any additional system capacity which takes the total installed capacity at the site above the STC threshold (100kW) cannot create STCs. This additional capacity may be eligible to register as a Power Station and create LGCs.
However, if the system is intended from the design and planning stages to be greater than 100kW, all stages of the installation would be considered as a Power Station, rather than separate small generation units eligible for STCs. The Regulator has previously failed large STC assignments for this.
3. Multiple systems on adjoining buildings or titles
Multiple systems, even when installed on separate buildings or titles, may be defined as a single system by the Regulator, especially where they are owned, operated and benefit a single entity. Multiple ABNs or separate meter connections at an address do not deter the Clean Energy Regulator from determining that the multiple systems actually constitute a single power station.
It is critical in all of these cases to seek advice from the Regulator before finalising any agreements. If you proceed with an installation and find you cannot create STCs, the business consequences can be devastating.
For more on creating LGCs and Power Stations, please visit our LGC page.