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G’day Residential Solar! Sungevity Expands Down Under

April 19, 2012

Five months after Oakland, California-based Sungevity began its international expansion, the residential solar developer is once again planting its flag in a different country. This time it’s Australia as they are beginning a joint venture with locally-based Nickel Energy to introduce a pay-as-you-go solar program.

Sungevity and Nickel Energy will be offering “Roof Juice”, a solar program with no upfront costs to homeowners. Instead, homeowners will purchase the solar electricity from their rooftop systems as they use it. Sungevity estimates that the average homeowner spends $12,400 on a 5 kilowatt (kw) system for their residence.

Nickel Energy is a fairly strategic partner for Sungevity as they have offices in New South Wales and Queensland, the Australian states that rank one and three respectively in terms of population. And Australians in these populous areas have plenty of incentive to “consume” Roof Juice.

Currently the Australian government offers five times the amount of Renewable Energy Certificates for the first 1.5 kw of solar energy installed under the Renewable Energy Target. In addition, between 2005 and 2010 the cost of electricity in Australia increased at nearly four times the rate of inflation according to the Institute of Public Affairs. Sydney led the way with a 61.3 percent increase during the time period followed by Melbourne with 56.8 percent hike.

Solar energy is a priority of the Australian government as they hope to receive 20 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020. Back in 2010, the country was receiving about 0.2 percent of its electricity from solar energy according to the Clean Energy Council.

When you combine government incentive, skyrocketing costs, and the country’s overall high potential for solar energy production due to its warm climate and latitude, Roof Juice should be a no-brainer for homeowners. 

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