Utility-scale solar deployment in the US doubled new gas capacity in the 2020-2021 period and almost half of planned power capacity to be built out over the next two years will be solar. Meanwhile, corporate solar is driving record deployment of non-utility scale capacity in the US.
China continues to march toward its long-term goal of 1,200 GW of renewable capacity and expand their output of solar photovoltaic products. Other portions of the Asia-Pacific region, particularly Southeast Asia, are increasingly important consumers and producers of solar energy and hardware.
Related ETF: Invesco Solar ETF (TAN)
Utility-Scale Solar Almost Half of US’s Planned Capacity
Per USA Today, citing the 2022 Sustainable Energy in America Factbook, solar and wind energy last year grew at the fastest rate in US history and now account for a record 13% of the nation’s power generation. Though natural gas remains the largest single source of US electricity generation, accounting for 38% of all capacity, new solar output has been deployed at a much faster rate over the last couple of years.
Of the 85 gigawatts (GW) of new generating capacity expected to be added to the US power grid from 2022 to 2023, utility-scale solar accounts for 41 GW (48%) of the planned capacity in the United States during the next two years, according to data reported in the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Preliminary Monthly Electric Generator Inventory. That new capacity will build on top of the 24 GW of utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity added to the US power grid between 2020 and 2021, double the new gas capacity added over that same period. The EIA expects that trend that will likely continue over the next two years as the demand for solar power continues to grow.
Some places in the US are becoming hot spots for solar deployment. In Texas, for instance, BNEF reports there are 106 GW worth of solar developments lined up with Ercot. Texas is expected to contribute 23% of new solar and battery storage through 2023, adding 12GW of new capacity. California is second with 11GW, and New York third with 4GW.
Per Bloomberg New Energy finance, global capacity of renewable energy contracts by corporations set a new record of 31 GW in 2021. The majority of that capacity was procured in the Americas, with 17GW coming from the United States. Last year, 67 companies…
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