- Global solar photovoltaic (PV) installed capacity was at least 177 GW by the end of 2014, a 26% increase on 2013’s 140 GW, according to the International Energy Agency Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme's (IEA-PVPS) report, "2014 Snapshot of Global PV Markets."
- IEA-PVPS countries installed 155 GW of new PV; non-PVPS countries added at least 22 GW more. With at least 10 times more installed PV capacity than in 2008, the world is now getting an estimated 1%-plus of its electricity from solar energy.
- The 2014 world PV market increase of 38.7 GW of new capacity was only 2.9% higher than 2013’s 37.6 GW of new PV. Europe fell from 2011’s 22 GW and 2013’s 11 GW to 2014’s 7 GW.
Solar is still growing, but the recent IEA report reveals fissures in the market that have analysts and renewable energy backers worried.
Germany fell to 1.9 GW of installed capacity. Italy’s feed-in tariff phase out took its annual installed capacity to 400 MW. Spain, the Czech Republic, Belgium, Greece, and Bulgaria saw almost no growth in 2014.
China led the world in new installed PV by adding 10.6 GW but fell short of its 14 GW target. Japan was second with 9.7 GW. The U.S. was third, at 6.2 GW, up 30% from 2013’s 4.8 GW.
The stabilized Chinese market and expanding Japanese growth suggest maturing markets that promise more for solar’s future, according to the report. Australia, Korea, Thailand, and Taiwan are now established PV markets. India’s annual growth of 600 MW was disappointing, given its ambitious goals and policies.
Israel led the Middle East in 2014 with 250 MW of new PV but Dubai is planning a 100 MW installation. South Africa became Africa’s first country to install 1 GW in a year in 2014. 20 countries had 1 GW of installed PV capacity at the end of 2014 and 5 installed at least 1 GW in 2014.