WHAT WILL SOLAR PV MARKETS LOOK LIKE IN 2020?

Scott Brown TGE Blog

WHAT WILL SOLAR PV MARKET LOOK LIKE IN 2020?

Historically, PV installations were driven mainly by government subsidies offered by well developed countries as part of their environmental strategies. They wanted to “be green” and reduce emissions, so solar PV was part of the solution as one of the available renewable energy technologies.

The initial costs of energy generated by solar PV were much higher than electricity from conventional sources like coal, oil, or nuclear. The biggest part of the cost of solar energy is the capital needed to finance the PV assets, mainly the PV panels. O&M costs are negligible compared to the capex costs and there are no fuel costs involved (so far, the sun shines for free).

In the period between 2014–2015, solar PV became cost competitive with grid electricity in several world markets — places with a lot of sunshine and high electricity prices (like California, Hawaii, Australia, etc.). From this point, “grid parity” onward, PV technology does not need government subsidies. Solar will be the first-choice technology cost wise. The new lower prices created even greater demand for solar and opened new markets in developing countries. More demand allowed for even further decreases in cost, making solar even more competitive, and so on.

This positive reinforcement creates a situation in which the cumulative solar PV capacity doubles every 24 months. Since the inception of solar, there has been a total of 320 GWp built. Within the next two years, this total capacity will be doubled. In the next 4 years there will be 4 times as many solar installations.

Therefore, in 2018, there will be ~640 GW of PV installed and the industry will need to employ up to 5 million people. By 2020, there will be ~1,280 GW installed and possibly 10 million people employed.

At the same time, costs of PV panels will continue to drop, so PV electricity will be cost competitive in more and more local markets.

For more information please visit: http://cleantechnica.com/2016/08/09/will-solar-pv-industry-look-2020/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+IM-cleantechnica+%28CleanTechnica%29

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