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Compliance Update – 1 April to 30 June 2020

27 July 2020

Our Compliance Update keeps you informed of activities related to our Compliance and Enforcement Priorities and other important information to help you comply with our schemes.

Enforceable undertakings

During the period 1 April to 30 June, we entered into four enforceable undertakings with scheme participants.

On 7 May 2020 we entered into an enforceable undertaking with Trina Solar (Australia) Pty Ltd to address any ineligible solar panel serial numbers that were uploaded into the SPV Service.

On 28 May 2020 we entered into an enforceable undertaking with Country Carbon Pty Limited to address compliance issues under the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011.

During May and June 2020 we accepted two enforceable undertakings with Clean Energy Council (CEC) accredited installers, being Mr Ryan Mulhern and Mr Sandeep Chikhale. Both installers submitted false information about the installation of solar PV systems to a second party that was relied on to create certificates. Both installers have undertaken to inspect, and if necessary, rectify a number of solar PV system installations at their own expense.

On 22 May 2020 registered agent Emerging Energy Solutions Group Pty Ltd completed an enforceable undertaking.

See all Current Enforceable Undertakings.

Suspension of registered agents

We continue to target non-compliance within SRES, including the misuse of CEC accredited installer details and the use of non-approved panels. During the last quarter, we permanently suspended the following registered agents, and their REC Registry accounts:

  • More Tiles and Ceramics Pty Ltd
  • AICA Engineering Pty Ltd, and
  • Robert Kirkpatrick.

The agents were suspended because we were satisfied that the agents had provided false information related to the creation of Small-scale Technology Certificates (STCs). We were also satisfied that More Tiles had breached the REC Registry terms and conditions.

All three agents were given the opportunity to respond to the allegations and have the right to seek a review of the decision to suspend their registration. At the time of publication, none of the agents had exercised that right of review.

Information concerning registered agents, including those currently suspended, can be found by searching Registered persons on the REC Registry.

Before creating STCs, agents are expected to conduct due diligence of their customers, including verifying that installations were completed by the CEC accredited installer listed on the STC assignment forms. If you haven’t already done so, you should complete SRES Smart. If you believe you have improperly created STCs please contact us to rectify the issue.

RET Inspector Appointment Revocations

There have been two inspector appointments revoked in the quarter due to the inspectors failing to meet the standards of behaviour and conduct we expect. Once an inspector appointment has been revoked, this person can no longer act as an agent on behalf of the Clean Energy Regulator for the purpose of inspections of solar PV installations.

Getting SRES Smart done

We continue to remind agents of the importance of completing SRES Smart, as it provides us with evidence and assurance that registered agents understand their expected capabilities and standards of practice as participants in the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES).

During this quarter we initiated a targeted education campaign focusing on top STC creators yet to complete the program.

National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting (NGER)

The Emissions and Energy Reporting System (EERS) is now open to accept NGER reports for the 2019-20 reporting period. Reports are due for submission in EERS by 2 November 2020.

To support reporters in submitting on-time, accurate and complete NGER reports by the due date; updated guidance material, calculators and training videos will soon be available on our website. In addition, we will be providing webinars closer to the reporting due date to help reporters meet their obligations under the NGER legislation.

Emissions Reduction Fund

The agency continues to observe a high degree of industry engagement with the Human Induced Regeneration/Native Forest from Managed Regrowth guidelines, with proponents implementing a range of transitionary approaches to bring existing projects into full compliance with the guidelines by December 2020. The agency will continue to engage with stakeholders on practical implementation solutions to support compliant participation and maintain scheme integrity.

Large-scale Renewables

New functionality introduced in October 2019 has made it simpler for power station applicants to understand the requirements of a complete application resulting in faster processing timeframes.

Following the implementation, power station accreditation assessment times have reduced. For the period 1 January 2020 to 30 June 2020, there has been a 63 per cent reduction in assessment time compared with the same period a year earlier – 45 days down from 120 days.

Greater industry awareness of the requirements, and the right tools and systems to facilitate this, have dramatically improved market access to large-scale generation certificates.

Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme

Over 50 per cent of STC applications are now using Solar Panel Validation (SPV). SPV provides retails and installers with confidence that the panels they are buying and installing are genuine and eligible for STCs. Agents relying on SPV are experiencing faster processing times, within 24 hours, and reducing risks to their business.

If you have information on potential fraudulent or non-compliant behaviour, report it today.

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