Feed-in tariff (FiT) rates are set annually by the Essential Services Commission (ESC). Each year, the ESC determines the fair value of solar generation by considering its wholesale market value, and now also considers the environmental and social value of distributed generation.

There is currently a minimum single-rate feed-in tariff and a time-varying feed-in tariff for excess electricity fed back into the grid.

What is the minimum feed-in tariff for 2019-20?

Under Victoria's general renewable energy feed-in tariff scheme, the minimum feed-in tariff is set and reviewed each year by Victoria's independent energy regulator, the ESC. On 28 February 2019, the ESC set new minimum feed-in tariff rates for the 2019-20 financial year. From 1 July 2019, retailers are providing one or both of

a) a single-rate minimum feed-in tariff of 12 c/kWh and/or

b) a time-varying minimum feed-in tariff scheme returning 9.9 c/kWh, 11.6 c/kWh and 14.6 c/kWh respectively for off-peak, shoulder and peak hours. 

Victorian electricity retailers are required to offer eligible feed-in tariff customers no less than this rate for electricity exported to the grid. Electricity retailers may offer a higher rate than the regulated minimum but are not obligated to do so. The weekday and weekend off-peak, shoulder and peak rates are as follows:

PeriodWeekdayWeekendRate: cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh)
Off-peak10pm to 7am10pm to 7am9.9
Shoulder7am to 3pm, 9pm to 10pm7am to 10pm11.6
Peak3pm to 9pmn/a14.6

In determining the minimum feed-in tariff, the ESC takes into account the wholesale cost of electricity (the price paid by retailers for electricity), any distribution and transmission losses avoided and the environmental and social value of renewable energy generation.

For minimum FiTs set over the 2019-20 financial year, the ESC has used a futures market approach to forecast wholesale prices that underpin the FiT rates, offering stakeholders a more transparent price that aligns with the method adopted by other regulators.

More information on the ESC's final determination can be found on the ESC website or by calling (03) 9032 1300.

What are the feed-in tariff rates for 2020-21?

On 25 February 2020, ESC released its final decision on the 2020-21 feed-in tariff rates following a period of consultation.

For the financial year beginning 1 July 2020, customers on the current minimum FiT will receive a single-rate minimum FiT of 10.2 cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh). This is a 1.8 c/kWh decrease compared to that in 2019-20.

Retailers can also offer solar customers a time-varying minimum FiT.

From 1 July 2020, under the time-varying tariff customers will receive an off-peak rate of 9.1 c/kWh, a shoulder rate of 9.8 c/kWh and a peak rate of 12.5 c/kWh. The time-varying tariff rates have all decreased slightly compared with the respective 2019-20 rates.

The table below summarises the time-varying minimum FiTs and the times for the weekday and weekend off-peak, shoulder and peak rates:

PeriodWeekdayWeekendRate: cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh)
Off-peak10pm to 7am10pm to 7am9.1
Shoulder7am to 3pm, 9pm to 10pm7am to 10pm9.8
Peak3pm to 9pmn/a12.5

Why are the 2020-21 feed-in tariff rates lower?

The single FiT for 2020-21 has decreased by 1.8 c/kWh compared to that offered in 2019-20.

This reduction in the 2020-21 single rate minimum FiT is largely due to the forecast reduction in wholesale electricity prices for the financial year between July 2020 and June 2021. In addition, the ESC has moved from taking a 40-day average to calculate estimated future wholesale electricity prices to a 12-month average of future prices. This approach is the same approach the ESC used to setting the Victorian Default Offer.

The time-varying FiT has also decreased overall. It has decreased by 0.8 c/kWh for off-peak, 1.8 c/kWh for shoulder, and 2.1 c/kWh for the peak rate, respectively.

Given the high share of rooftop solar in Victoria, ESC uses a solar-weighted wholesale electricity price for setting the time-varying tariff, rather than the previously used time-weighted. This approach better reflects the true value of solar exports to the grid.

Using solar-weighted prices, the time-varying FiT rate reduces. Solar generators have become the dominant source of small scale renewable generation and tend to produce electricity at the same times during the middle of the day, which lowers prices at those times.

More information about the 2020-21 FiT rates can be found on the ESC’s website, at:

https://www.esc.vic.gov.au/electricity-and-gas/electricity-and-gas-tariffs-and-benchmarks/minimum-feed-tariff

How to apply

To access the minimum feed-in tariff, you must have your solar or other type of renewable energy system fully installed, signed off by a licensed electrical inspector and have submitted all the paperwork to your electricity retailer.

Paperwork includes:

Once paperwork is submitted, to complete the eligibility process you may also need to have your metering upgraded before feed-in credits can be applied to your account.

Learn more about meters.

Eligibility

The feed-in tariff is available to households, community organisations and businesses. To be considered for the feed-in tariff, you must:

  • have a renewable energy system of less than 100 kilowatts generating capacity in size
  • have bi-directional metering in place that measures two-way electricity flows and records them on a half hourly basis

Page last updated: 25/03/20