Solar set to leap

Solar PV installations on houses and commercial buildings will leap over the next five years, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA) in its latest renewable energy market forecast. Known collectively as distributed PV, and part of the predicted decentralisation of energy production, the growth in solar energy will form the backbone of renewable growth in the next few years.

The IEA report forecasts that the world’s total renewable-based power capacity will grow by 50 per cent between 2019 and 2024, creating an increase of 1.2TW, driven by lowered costs and policy.

Of this growth solar PV will account for 60 per cent of the rise, and in total the share of renewables in global power generation will rise from a quarter (26 per cent today) to a third (30 per cent in 2024).

The predicted growth comes after renewable capacity additions stalled last year for the first time in almost two decades.

“Renewables are already the world's second largest source of electricity, but their deployment still needs to accelerate if we are to achieve long-term climate, air quality and energy access goals,” said Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director.

The report warns, however, that important policy and tariff reforms are needed to ensure distributed PV’s growth is sustainable. Unmanaged growth could disrupt electricity markets by raising system costs, challenging the grid integration of renewables and reducing the revenues of network operators.

Full report here.

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