Small Scale Renewable Energy Installations in Western Australia
Electrical workers and electrical contractors in Western Australia were issued a reminder about the regulations for Renewable Energy Systems in issue 2 of the Electrical Focus, published on 9 April 2020. The Electrical Focus is emailed to all electrical licence holders and subscribers for the purpose of keeping the industry up to date with changes to standards and regulations and to provide reminders and cautions to electrical workers. The Electrical Focus is available to download here.
The key points for those working in the small scale renewable energy industry in Western Australia are as follows:
- The installation of solar PV systems, battery storage systems and wind turbines are notifiable electrical work. This means that under the Electricity (Licensing) Regulations 1991, the nominee for the licensed electrical contractor must submit a Notice of Completion to the relevant network operator for each installation within three days from the time the work was completed. This applies to both installations connected to a network and for standalone systems.
- Where installations are carried out under sub-contracts, it is the responsibility of the licensed electrical contractor that does the work to submit the notices to the network operator.
- With the exception of some mechanical work such as building a battery rack or installing the solar panel brackets, almost all of the work is electrical work that must be performed by a licensed electrical worker. This includes the interconnection of solar panels and bonding. Apprentices must be supervised. Regulation 49D of the Electricity (Licensing) Regulations 1991 outlines the requirements for apprenticeship supervision.
These are not new guidelines but reminders of longstanding requirements.
The industry has recently been informed of a change to the submission of Electrical Safety Certificates. As of 1 July 2020, Electrical Safety Certificates must be generated using eNotice. Paper Electrical Safety Certificates must not be used.
Building and Energy will be working to ensure that PV solar installations and battery storage systems are installed according to WA Regulations.
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