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Solar power thrives on rooftops

Rooftops 'a powerful energy source'
Taken from:

Any debate or inquiry into nuclear power should consider the option of solar energy, a housing advisory group says.

National building advisory service Archicentre said governments around Australia should create a national research and solar industry development fund of $1 billion to develop solar technology and create jobs.

"Millions of hectares of rooftops exist in Australian suburbs and industrial estates that should be productive fields of efficient and non-polluting energy," said Archicentre managing director Robert Caulfield.

He said this source of energy remained untapped because of the failure of governments to focus on building a national solar industry that could create a major export market with leading technology.

"Australia as a country should be moving towards making every home, via its roof and design, a net contributor to the electricity grid.

"One of the things that mass-produced solar technology would bring is affordability that would place clean solar energy within the reach of everyone."

Mr Caulfield said that in 1995 solar power provided less than one per cent of the energy used by Australian households.

He said that figure was forecast to rise to just 1.1 per cent by 2010.

© 2006 AAP