The world added .115 terawatts of solar power in 2019 for a cumulative .629 terawatts

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From pv magazine Germany

Last year, the world added 114.9 GW of photovoltaic systems, the third year in a row that figure has been over 100 GW, according to the just published preliminary IEA PVPS reportSnapshot of Global PV Markets 2020.”

That’s a 12% increase over the previous year and brings the world’s cumulative photovoltaic peak output to 629 GW as of the end of 2019.

At 30.1 GW in 2019, China was still by far the largest photovoltaic market in the world, but that market declined for the third year in a row.

Continental divide

By continent, The IEA PVPS report places the EU in second place with a total of 16 GW of new photovoltaic systems. The U.S. was in third place with a newly installed PV output of 13.3 GW, ahead of India with 9.9 GW and Japan with 7 GW. Vietnam followed with 4.8 GW, Spain with 4.4 GW and Germany with 3.9 GW. The top 10 is rounded out by Australia, Ukraine and South Korea with more than 3 GW each in 2019

Asia holds the continental lead with 57 percent of the world market — as countries such as South Korea, Taiwan and Malaysia have compensated for the market declines in China and India.

The U.S. remains the largest market in North and South America, followed by Brazil which added 2 GW and Mexico with 1 GW.

Spain made a comeback to lead the EU with 4.4 GW, followed by Germany at 3.9 GW, with the Netherlands adding 2.4 GW of new solar equipment, and France adding 900 MW. The report notes an increase of around 600 MW for Italy and 544 MW for Belgium.

Outside the EU, there were also positive developments, particularly in Eastern European countries. Ukraine saw demand of 3.5 GW, Hungary installed 900 MW and Poland energized 800 MW. Europe as a whole had a global share of around 18% of new solar.

Cumulatively

In the ranking for most installed photovoltaics, China leads, by a lot, with 204.7 GW — followed by the U.S. with 75.9 GW and Japan with 63 GW. Germany is in fourth place with 49.2 GW, followed by India with 42.8 GW and Italy with 20.8 GW.

IEA PVPS specifies the cumulative installed photovoltaic output in the EU at 131.7 GW.

The report sees falling storage prices, the spread of EVs and commercial green hydrogen as drivers of solar growth. According to the research, the contribution of photovoltaics to global electricity needs is just under 3%.

The IEA PVPS report can be downloaded here.