Germany installed nearly 1,000 MW (1 GW) of new solar power in September, bringing its total for the year up to 6,200 MW (6.22 GW). These statistics were provided by the German Federal Network Agency, The Bundesnetzagentur (or BNetzA). The solar industry there also saw solar generation growth of over 50% in the first 9 months of 2012.
“Solar’s share in German electricity production rose from 4.1 percent to 6.1 percent, while wind power gained slightly to 8.6 percent from 8.0 percent and biomass accounted for almost 6 per cent,” Renew Economy notes. “Renewables combined accounted for about 26 per cent of Germany’s electricity production over the first nine months on 2012.”
According to Germany Energy Blog’s reporting on Germany’s Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG), the optimum annual PV deployment in Germany is between 2.5 GW and 3.5 GW. Exceeding that range results in a decrease in feed-in tariffs for new installations by 2.5% per month.
Germany has now installed more than 30 GW of solar power since embarking on its energy transformation, Energiewende. “A recent GTM Stat of-the-Day showed that Germany installs PV on solar rooftops ten times faster than the U.S.,” Greentech Media noted when discussing the September installation news:
Compared to Germany’s 6.22 GW of solar, solar installations in the U.S. now total around 3.2 GW for 2012 (and remember that the U.S. has several times more people and uses several times more electricity).
The U.S. solar industry is seeing a healthy growth rate of 71%. “But the next couple of years are hard to call,” says Shayle Kann, VP of GTM Research.
“We have a more sober assessment of 2013,” said Kann. He is projecting close to 4 GW in the coming year. But no one is certain what exactly will happen in the solar industry with the the ITC grant sunset. Still, “it’s hard to imagine a down year for 2013,” Kann notes.
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