Portuguese Solar Capacity Growing Slowly

Portugal Installed 142 MW New Solar In 5M/2023 As Total Renewables Capacity Exceeds 17 GW
Since the end of 2022 when the country added 860 MW new PV, Portuguese solar market has grown by only 142 MW since then till May 2023 with a total of 2.703 GW, as per the DGEG. This is a machine translation of DGEG’s solar PV installed capacity table. (Photo Credit: DGEG, Portugal)
Since the end of 2022 when the country added 860 MW new PV, Portuguese solar market has grown by only 142 MW since then till May 2023 with a total of 2.703 GW, as per the DGEG. This is a machine translation of DGEG’s solar PV installed capacity table. (Photo Credit: DGEG, Portugal)
  • Portugal has increased its cumulative installed solar PV capacity to exceed 2.7 GW till May 2023
  • Alentejo leads the cumulative with 882 MW installed, followed by Algarve with 525 MW and Central Region with 484 MW
  • Distributed PV capacity increase is slow-paced with only 56.28 MW deployed till 2022-end, and remained unchanged till May 2023

Solar PV capacity installations in Portugal continue to grow at a snail's pace as the country has installed only 142 MW new projects during 5M/2023 period, according to the Directorate General for Energy and Geology (DGEG), taking the national cumulative to 2.703 GW.

In the previous year, which was the country's best to date for its solar PV installations, Portugal deployed 860 MW as the aggregate ended at 2.561 GW at the end of 2022.

Since 2014, only 12 solar PV plants with a total capacity of 15 MW have come online in the country, even though it offers good solar irradiance, especially in the Iberian region. Nonetheless, the country has a multi-GW pipeline for subsidy-free solar PV plants, as per the SolarPower Europe's (SPE) Global Market Outlook for Solar Power 2022-2026 (see Global Cumulative PV Capacity Exceeds 1 TW).

Distributed solar PV capacity has not increased on cumulative basis, as it remains stuck at 56.28 MW since the end of 2022, according to the DGEG statistics.

Alentejo region leads Portuguese solar PV capacity on absolute basis with 882 MW installed till May 2023, followed by 525 MW in Algarve, and 484 MW in Central Region. DGEG says Aletejo accounts for 40% of the national PV production.

Among renewables, hydro power leads currently with 8.12 GW total capacity at the end of May 2023, followed by 5.692 GW wind energy. Hydro was also the fastest growing power technology between 2014 to May 2023 with 2.5 GW, followed by PV with 2.3 and wind with 700 MW.

Till the end of May 2023, Portugal had installed 17.41 GW total renewable energy capacity. The government is now targeting a higher share of renewables in the national electricity mix, aiming for 80% by 2026 and 85% by 2030 with solar PV contributing 20.4 GW in 2030 under the 1st revision of the National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP) submitted to the EU (see Portugal Tweaks Renewable Energy Targets).

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