Australia Solar Panels
Rows of solar panels face skywards at the Greenough River Solar project near the town of Walkaway, about 350 km (217 miles) north of Perth October 10, 2012. Australia switched on its first utility-scale solar farm on Wednesday, bringing the country a small step closer to achieving ambitious renewable energy use targets that traditional coal and gas power producers are now fighting to soften. Reuters/Rebekah Kebede

A new study by the Climate Council predicts that the growing competition between leading companies in investing in clean energy would lead to cheaper solar panels and electricity, with Australia expected to lead the world when it comes to home battery storage in households.

The Climate Council said that about half of all Australian households would potentially use battery storage for their solar systems on the basis of a $10,000 battery system, with a payback of 10 years. The new study indicates that the trend of battery storage could make energy cheaper by 2018.

Australia already has 1.4 million households with solar panels on their rooftops and is the target of leading manufacturers of home-based battery systems. With that, the study predicts that the cost of battery storage would also drop “dramatically.”

Recently, US firm Tesla announced its plan to market the first batch of its 7 kWh Powerwall system in Australia by the end of 2015. Australia reportedly will be one of the first countries worldwide to have the new product on its market.

The product will be launched by Tesla in partnership with Canberra-based business, Reposit Power, which allows people to buy and sell their stored electricity in the country. The Guardian also reported the plan of the company Enphase Energy to set up its home energy solution in Australia and New Zealand in 2016, with its system using a combination of solar generation, energy control and storage.

The competition in the growing solar energy industry would cause prices to fall, which could be a “game changer” in Australia’s use of electricity, said Amanda McKenzie, chief executive of the Climate Council.

“Australians are forging a people-led renewables revolution,” she stated.

“Australia leads the world in rooftop solar with more than twice the solar PV penetration rates of the next country – Belgium – and more than three times the penetration of Germany, the US and the UK,” McKenzie told the Guardian.

The Climate Council said that energy storage will allow households to accumulate the biggest savings by storing their energy for later use instead of buying electricity, especially during expensive peak demand periods.

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