EurObserv'ER releases photovoltaic barometer
Friday, May 19, 2017
Main findings of the 2017 EurObserv'ER Photovoltaic Barometer

The global solar photovoltaic market peaked in 2016 and surged past the 76 GW mark, with peak growth at 50% over 2015. The additional on-grid capacity has taken global photovoltaic capacity to 304 GW. Frontrunner of this global explosion being the Chinese, American and Indian markets which have more or less doubled their annual installed capacity in 2016. The European market in contrast seems to have drifted into slack water. It connected only 6.1 GW of additional capacity in 2016 and in doing so slipped below the previous year’s figure of 7.9 GW (- 22.7 %). This development is mainly due to adaptation to a new regulatory framework in the European market and a sharp drop of connections experienced especially in the UK but also in other EU markets. EU’s installed base reached 100.9 GW at the end of 2016, thus passing the 100 GWp mark.

Development of the solar photovoltaic market in the European Union (EU)

The UK topped the European photovoltaic league for the third year running and installed 2.4 GW of new capacity. However, compared to 2015 figures (3.8 GW of new capacity installed) this meant a dramatic 36.9% drop in the number of connections. Germany, being second on the list, was able to stabilize its market in 2016, adding around 1.5 GW of new capacity in 2016, which means a slight increase compared to the 2015 figures (+1.4 %). France experienced a sharp drop in the amount of capacity connected during 2016. It installed only 0.6 GW of new capacity in 2016 compared to 0.9 GW in 2015. Across the European Union, the weather was generally unfavorable to solar electricity, with lower production observed in several countries (Germany, Spain, Italy, Belgium and the Czech Republic). Still electricity generation from solar PV reached 105.3 TWh in 2016 (compared to 102.8 TWh in 2015, thus +2.5 %).

About EurObserv’ER

EurObserv’ER regularly publishes market reports (Barometers) containing energy data reflecting the current dynamics in renewable sources of energy in 10 sectors (solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal, biogas, solid biomass, biofuels, heat pumps, small hydro, renewable waste) within the European Union and worldwide.

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