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France Issues 20 Gigawatts Of Solar Tenders

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France streetIt wasn’t long ago that any project around 100 megawatts in size was a big story here on CleanTechnica. Things have changed fast.

France hasn’t historically been a major player in the solar market, but it is going to be shutting down a lot of old nuclear reactors in the coming years, and solar is on the way.

A big sign of change in both of these respects is that France has announced solar tenders to have 20 gigawatts (20,000 megawatts) of solar power capacity installed by 2023.

“The tenders are expected to hit incremental goals of 10.2 GW by 2018, and between 18.2 to 20.2 GW by 2023,” Glenn Meyers writes on Planetsave, and if they are achieved, that means France will have tripled its solar power capacity by then (from ~6.2 GW today).

It’s a pretty good time for France to get into the solar game, considering that solar power is now often cheaper than new power capacity from fossil fuels and nuclear, and offers grid and societal benefits that fossils and nuclear don’t.

Also, as noted above, nuclear power will be shutting down en masse in the coming years. No plants will be shuttered till 2019, but electricity from nuclear is expected to drop from 75% today to 50% in 2025.

The funny thing is, I remember nuclear fans a few years ago hyping France as an example of where to go. You don’t hear much about France from them these days — and, actually, you don’t hear much about nuclear at all. When the world’s nuclear energy leader is switching to solar (and wind), you know the industry is not the electricity captain of the future … as anyone paying attention to the numbers needed that signpost anyway.

And that’s just concerning utility-scale solar — remember, rooftop solar prices compete with retail electricity, and that’s what enables democratization of energy and will lead to even more viral growth of the industry, imho.

Photo by Edgardo W. Olivera (some rights reserved)

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Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA], NIO [NIO], Xpeng [XPEV], Ford [F], ChargePoint [CHPT], Amazon [AMZN], Piedmont Lithium [PLL], Lithium Americas [LAC], Albemarle Corporation [ALB], Nouveau Monde Graphite [NMGRF], Talon Metals [TLOFF], Arclight Clean Transition Corp [ACTC], and Starbucks [SBUX]. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort.


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