Global Solar Power Growth Doubled
In 2010: Study
Mar 03, 2011 - Gerard Wynn - Reuters - planetark.org
The world added about 16 gigawatts of new solar
photovoltaic (PV) power in 2010, double the growth
seen a year earlier, the European Photovoltaic Industry
Association told Reuters on Monday.
Uncertainty about Italian figures made a precise
figure difficult, after an end-of-year rush to qualify
for a higher solar power price premium, called a
The global increase compared with 7.2 GW of new
capacity in 2009, confounding a financial crisis
and reflecting sharp falls in solar panel prices
and generous subsidies, especially in Germany and
"Solar PV is continuing to develop in countries
that put a feed-in tariff in place," said EPIA
economist Gaetan Masson.
The added capacity in 2010 brought cumulative, global
solar PV power to nearly 40 GW, up 70 percent from
nearly 23 GW in 2009.
Europe dominated new solar power installations last
year, at about 13 gigawatts (GW), Masson estimated,
with Germany and Italy accounting for nearly 7 GW
and about 3 GW respectively.
Estimates for the other major European players included
the Czech Republic (1.3 GW), France (0.5 GW), Spain
(0.4), Belgium (0.25) and Greece (0.2).
Outside Europe, the biggest markets were Japan (about
1 GW), United States (0.8 GW) and China (0.4 GW).
Solar panel prices have halved since 2007, say analysts,
at about $1.8 per watt at the end of 2010 compared
with $3.7 three years earlier.
The fortunes of the solar market contrasted with
wind, which last year shrank for the first time in
two decades as a result of a difficult market for
project finance as well as uncertain regulatory support.