The solar industry is experiencing strong growth in Germany and worldwide. In the first quarter in Germany, the industry recorded an increase of 6 GWp or 32 percent in photovoltaic output, as the German Solar Industry Association (BSW) announced on Wednesday in Munich.
The most important drivers are systems on residential buildings and open space parks, which grew strongly last year and for which the BSW is also forecasting significant growth in the current year. For medium-sized systems on commercial roofs, on the other hand, it went down last year and the association expects stagnation in the current year.
At the same time, the area of domestic electricity storage grew. Last year, the BSW recorded an increase of around 60 percent to 141,000 newly built systems. More than every second new solar system is now equipped with a storage device, said BSW CEO Carsten Körnig.
The industry is also growing rapidly worldwide: According to BSW, 181 to 189 GW of capacity was newly installed last year; in China alone it was almost 55 GW. For this year, Körnig expects more than 200 gigawatts. With a view to the cumulative capacity installed worldwide, he expects that the threshold of one terawatt of capacity will soon be exceeded.
Germany in 6th place
In a global comparison, Germany is fourth in terms of installed capacity with 60.6 GW. First is China with 308.3 GW. When it comes to expansion, it is enough for the Federal Republic for sixth place. Here, too, China is clearly in the lead.
The BSW is also optimistic for the coming years – partly because of the federal government’s plans for faster solar expansion. By 2030, the BSW in Germany expects a price-adjusted doubling of the industry turnover to 15 billion euros including electricity storage. At the same time, the number of employees along the value chain in Germany is set to rise to around 100,000. However, the supply of skilled workers is also a challenge in the solar industry.
The Federal Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) emphasized that a real photovoltaic boom is needed to achieve the federal government’s goals, one that overshadows everything that has been added in Germany to date. To do this, politicians must “accelerate planning and approval processes and create clear, future-oriented framework conditions that enable the necessary investments”.