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Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage
The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP

Thursday, 15 May 2003

Budget funding for Photovoltaic Rebate Scheme

Dr David Kemp: One of the very positive outcomes of the budget this year has been the extension of the Photovoltaic Rebate Scheme for another two years. This scheme is very important in supporting the installation of solar power energy-producing in homes. The solar power in homes has been a great initiative. We've seen thousands of homes around Australia now installing solar power panels. This is clean, renewable energy. It doesn't produce any greenhouse gases, over time becomes a very economic proposition for these homes, and the government is very keen to support consumers through the rebate in encouraging them to install these solar panels on their roofs.

The extension of this scheme for two years I'm sure will be very widely welcomed in the community and by the industry. The industry sees that very rapid growth is now underway. In fact the growth is so rapid that we had to cap the scheme last year because of the intense demand for the solar panel rebates.

The government has now decided to further extend these rebates for two years. The rebate will be $4,000 for each of the panels that will be put in at a maximum rate. It depends, of course, on the nature of the panel that's installed. But I'm very pleased to be able to announce that we are extending this rebate scheme, and we want to see many more Australian households participating in producing clean energy and using the immense power that we get from the sun through these solar panels. That's a great future for many Australian homes. It's good clean renewable energy.

We are changing the level of the rebate because of the huge popularity of the scheme. We don't want to run into the situation where we have to cap the scheme in future. There's clearly a very large demand for these solar panels. And, by changing the level of the rebate, we believe that we can continue this rebate in an uncapped way for the next two years, which will be very welcome to householders as they consider whether or not to install these panels.

Media contact:
Catherine Job 02 6277 7640 or 0408 648 400

Commonwealth of Australia