Germany officially breached the 4 GW milestone for the year 2020 and nearly even touched the 5 GW level. Its total installed solar PV capacity for the year reached 4.88 GW, according to the country’s regulator Bundesnetzagentur. This is well above 1 GW additional capacity the country has reported after closing 2019 with 3.94 GW (see German PV Market Grows To 3.94 GW In 2019). In 2018, the market added 2.9 GW.
December 2020 turned out to be the month with the largest installations reported for any month during the year with 525.4 MW added, compared to 339.4 MW installed in December 2019. In November 2020, the PV additions were earlier reported to be 481 MW, and later adjusted by Bundesnetzagentur to 453.43 MW (see Germany Installed 481 MW Solar In November 2020).
This 4.88 GW means SolarPower Europe’s EU Market Outlook for Solar Power 2020-2024 was correct in its prediction for the market when it released mid-December 2020 placing it on top of all European Union (EU) markets for largest amount of solar power capacity installed in 2020. The SolarPower Europe report expects Germany to add 26.9 GW of new capacity between 2021-2024 to take its cumulative installed capacity under its medium scenario to an estimated 81.5 GW (see SolarPower Europe Says EU Added 18.2 GW Solar In 2020).
With the 2020 numbers in, Germany’s cumulative installed solar power capacity at the end of December 2020 should be well over 54 GW.
Pointing at the 27.6% annual increase in 2020 solar installations in the country, German Solar Industry Association (BSW) said this reflects the growing interest of home owners in rooftop solar driven by increased environmental awareness, declining prices of solar PV technology and the increasing switch to electromobility.
It points out that solar power systems of less than 10 kW capacity represented 1.131 MW of the total beating the last high of 700 MW installed by this segment in 2011. The commercial PV segment in the system range of 10 kW to 750 kW added 2.887 GW to the total representing 6% of the total, while projects above 750 kW represented 867 MW capacity addition having increased 61% on annual basis.
“The addition of photovoltaic systems must now be increased by a factor of two, or rather three, in all market segments in order to avoid a climate protection and power generation gap,” emphasized BSW General Manager Carsten Körnig.
Under its Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG 2021) passed by the German Parliament (Bundestag), Germany aims to have 65% share of renewable energy in its total electricity mix by 2030 with solar contributing 100 GW which BSW sees allowing for less than 5 GW annual additions (see German Parliament Passes EEG 2021; Industry Not Happy).