The popularity of solar power smashed records with a huge spike recorded in small-scale technology certificate (STC) creation in 2017.

STC creation was 14 per cent greater than already-strong 2017 October levels, and struck the highest level of creation in five years.

According to Green Energy Markets the weekly average for 2017 is 420,000, up from 405,000 at the end of October 2017.

The three-month weekly average is significantly higher at 502,000, a rise from the 466,000 listed at the end of October.

GEM observes that in recent years creation has typically been higher in the second half of the year, and 2017 is no exception.

Using the three-month net average GEM estimated the likely tally for the remainder of 2017, the analysis revealing the market could exceed the target by 8.9 million certificates.

STCs representing 18,038 solar PV systems and 120 MW of capacity were created in November, a rise on October figures by 15 per cent and 13 per cent respectively.

STCs representing 5,864 solar water heater systems were created in November; but this was actually 10 per cent lower than the number of systems in October.

23 power stations were also accredited during November 2017 with a combined capacity of 18.2MW.

The bulk of capacity is attributed to the 10.8MW Lakeland Solar and Storage facility near Cooktown in Far North Queensland.

SunWiz Solar Consultants has declared 2017 “a year of records for Australian solar power with one gigawatt already commissioned”.

Highlights of the 10 records that were broken in 2017 include:

  • Fastest time to reach one gigawatt of commissioned solar in a calendar year – a figure that looks set to reach 1.05GW once the final tally is in, the SunWiz calculator said
  • The large-scale lookout reveals more than 114lMW of systems over 100lkW were 2017 (of which Kidston Solar Farm contributed 50MW)
  • Record volume of solar commissioned in a calendar year, with figures suggesting the previous best of 1.058GW in 2012 will be exceeded
  • Record volume of PV rooftop commercial commissioned
  • Record volume of sub-100kW solar registered in a month … a stellar result … both October and November will be in the list documenting the top five months of registration
  • Record volume of PV registered in NSW in any month
  • Record average system size in the sub-100kW market which in October 2017 hit 6.7 kW/system.
  • This is an indication of both the growing size of residential systems and the increasing volume and proportion of the market that is commercial
  • Record proportion of system volume in the 75-100kW range
  • Record volume in every commercial system size sub-range
  • World’s biggest lithium battery, installed in record time 
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