What is the Renewable Energy Scheme?

The Australian Government set a renewable energy target (RET) to encourage more production of electricity from renewable sources. Renewable energy sources include bio, geothermal, ocean, solar and wind energy as well as hydropower. The government has set a target of 20% renewables by 2020.

The RET creates a legal requirement for retailers such as Jacana Energy to get a part of their overall energy from renewable energy generators. Retailers buy this energy in the form of renewable energy certificates or RECs. Each REC represents 1 MWh of renewable energy. RECs are created by renewable energy companies and supplied either directly to retailers or they are sold on an open market. Like any market, the price of RECs is created by the forces of supply and demand.

A proportion of certificates a retailer must buy each year have to be sourced from large renewable energy generators (such as wind farms and large commercial solar installations). These certificates are called large-scale generation certificates or LGCs.

Retailers must also buy a proportion of their renewable energy from small renewable generators (such as solar hot water or solar PV systems). These certificates are called small-scale technology certificates or STCs.

What are Small-scale Technology Certificates (STCs)?

A small-scale technology certificate is a type of renewable energy certificate. When you install an eligible small-scale renewable energy system such as solar panel systems, small-scale wind systems, small-scale hydro systems, solar water heaters or air source heat pumps you are entitled to a number of STCs. These certificates can be created through the REC Registry.

The amount of STCs you can create is calculated based on the amount of electricity a system produces. As a general guide, an STC is obtained for every 1 megawatt-hour (1000 kilowatt-hours) of electricity produced by your system.

You can calculate the number of small-scale technology certificates your system may be eligible for using the small generation unit calculator and solar water heater calculator.

Owners of eligible small-scale renewable energy systems can assign their certificates to a registered agent or sell their STCs to partially offset the cost of installation.

Make sure that your system is eligible for STCs before committing to purchase and installation. Find out more about eligibility criteria.

How can I gain a financial benefit for my STCs?

As the owner of an eligible small-scale renewable energy system you have two options for gaining a financial benefit for your STCs:

  1. Assigning the right to create your STCs to a registered agent in exchange for a discount on your system or an upfront financial benefit. A registered agent under the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme is a retailer, trader or installer of small-scale renewable energy systems who can create STCs which have been assigned to them. The Clean Energy Regulator (CER) website has a list of registered agents.
  2. Create and sell the STCs yourself, either directly to an electricity retailer like Jacana Energy or into the open market through the STC Clearing House. All small-scale technology certificates must be created within 12 months of the system installation.

The majority of system owners choose to assign the right to create small-scale technology certificates to a registered agent, as receiving an upfront financial benefit is often a simpler process, and faster than creating and trading the certificates independently through the open market or STC Clearing House.

If you do not want to create and sell your STCs yourself, we recommend you ask your installer if they are a registered agent and willing to handle this process for you before you commit to the purchase of a small-scale technology system.

Can I apply to assign STCs to Jacana Energy?

No. As of 1 July 2016 Jacana Energy only accepts STC assignment applications from installers on behalf of their customers. Please talk to your installer for more information.

Can I sell my STCs to Jacana Energy?

Yes, you can. If you have created your certificates in the REC Registry and wish to sell them to Jacana Energy call us on 08 8928 6790 for our current price for STCs. If you decide to sell your STCs to Jacana Energy you will have to transfer them to us in the REC Registry and we will pay you the agreed amount. The price for STCs offered by Jacana Energy may vary.

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