Australia has again shown its strength in PV, leading the world in PV penetration, and having the world’s highest solar PV per capita according to the IEA PV Power Systems Snapshot of Global PV Markets 2022.
Prof Renate Egan, Australian PV Institute (APVI) Member and Australian contributor to the report, notes “Last year Australia moved ahead of Germany for the most solar installed per capita. With a strong year in 2021, we have increased our lead – with solar now contributing over 13% of all electricity demand, a figure that has doubled in less than three years.”
Australia also remains in the top ten for both new installs and total market, as it has done for over twenty years. Renate continues, “The APVI has been tracking solar PV installs in Australia since 1992, when 7MW was installed, with only 1.6MW on -grid. With at least 4.6GW installed in 2021, we are now installing twice as much every day as we did in an entire year in 1992.”
The report which analyses the 2021 preliminary reported PV market data, found that despite a second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the global PV market again grew significantly. Over 175 GW of PV systems were installed and commissioned in the world last year which means that the total cumulative installed capacity for PV at the end of 2021 reached 942 GW. China remains in the top spot for annual installed and total cumulative PV capacity, continuing the dominance of previous years.
Although preliminary in nature, the Snapshot report reveals some important trends:
- Australia, Spain, Greece, Honduras, the Netherlands, Chile and Germany now have enough PV capacity to produce more than 10% of their annual electricity demand with PV.
- Some growing key markets contributed significantly to new additions in 2021, Brazil (5.5 GW, fifth), Australia (4.6 GW, eighth), Korea (4.2 GW, ninth), Mexico (1.8 GW). Preliminary numbers show that Taiwan, Pakistan each have installed close to 2 GW.
- Among the top 10 countries, there are now five Asia-Pacific countries (Australia, China, India, Japan, Korea), three European countries (Germany, Spain and France) and two countries in the Americas (Brazil and the USA).
- The Chinese PV market grew again in 2021, despite shortages observed in the value chain during the year and was the largest market in terms of annual installed capacity. In 2021, 54.9 GW of PV were installed, compared to 48.2 GW in 2020 and 30.1 GW in 2019. China remains the leader in terms of cumulative capacity with 5 GW installed, almost one third of the global PV installed capacity.
- In addition to China, the rest of the global PV market grew significantly from 97 GW in 2020, to at least 120 GW in 2021, a 24% increase year on year.
- The US market saw its market increasing to 26.9 GW which allowed it to overtake the European Union that was ranked second last year. Utility-scale installations accounted for about 75% of the new additions.
Find Full Report here