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Jump in size of solar panels on homes

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

There’s been a jump in the size of solar panels being installed on New Zealand homes, says the Electricity Authority.

The Authority is the electricity market regulator and closely monitors trends.

Solar installation capacity is now averaging just over 1 kW higher, says Authority chief executive James Stevenson-Wallace.

"Around 300 New Zealand households are installing solar panels each month," he says.

"New statistics show solar panels installed on New Zealand residential properties in the past 3 months averaged 4.5 kW in capacity, compared to the previous long-term average of 3.4 kW."

In total, 19,497 New Zealand residential connections now have solar panels (as at 30 September 2018), 3,840 more than the same time last year. And their combined capacity is now 67.6 MW, 14.7 MW more than a year ago. This is equivalent to the energy use of just under 12,000 New Zealand households in a year.

"It looks like the change could be because customers can get more value from installing a bigger solar system with a battery to store and then use the power," says Stevenson-Wallace.

Nelson is the region with the highest proportion of residential solar installations, at 487 or 2.2 per cent.

The region with the largest number is New Zealand’s largest population centre Auckland, with solar on 4,204 residential properties.

The graph shows the average capacity of new residential solar installations by month for the five years to 30 September 2018.

Average capacity of new residential solar installations by month

Source: Electricity Market Information website

The Electricity Authority is an independent Crown Entity that promotes a competitive, reliable and efficient electricity industry for the long-term benefit of consumers and New Zealand.

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