• SPE has launched a Solar Manufacturing Accelerator platform which it claims will support local solar manufacturing projects
  • It will be open to all companies and organizations that are interested in developing or partnering on solar manufacturing projects.
  • SPE’s Industrial Strategy Workstream will coordinate the platform and identify partners and financial investors

European solar PV lobby association SolarPower Europe (SPE) has announced a Solar Manufacturing Accelerator platform to support solar manufacturing projects by identifying partners and financial investors. The objective behind launching the platform is to increase the number of solar PV manufacturing projects in Europe ‘contributing to the success of the European Green Deal’.

To be coordinated by SPE’s Industrial Strategy Workstream, the accelerator platform will be open to all companies and organizations that are interested in developing or partnering on solar manufacturing projects.

“With the ‘Solar Manufacturing Accelerator’ we aim to showcase the vast potential of solar PV manufacturing in Europe, and provide the appropriate industrial and political ecosystem needed to bring these projects forward. European solar manufacturers are already leading in innovative solar technologies, such as heterojunction cells, perovskite tandem cells, grid-connected technologies, and battery storage systems,” said SPE’s Policy Director Aurelie Beauvais. “We aim to demonstrate the breadth of these cutting-edge technologies ahead of the launch of the European Commission’s ‘Industrial Forum’ in September 2020.”

SolarPower Europe’s push for re-establishing large-scale solar manufacturing in Europe was recently complemented by 90 European solar organizations that have come together to demand solar PV manufacturing and R&D to be set at the core of the European Green Deal.

The call to support initiatives for local solar PV manufacturing by industry representatives in Europe has found support coming from policymakers as well and has become more pronounced with COVID-19 pandemic bringing forth the dangers of dependence on global supply chain. At the initiative of Lithuania, 8 European nations namely Austria, Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Poland, and Spain in early May wrote a letter to the European Commission to include renewable energy as wind, solar and storage to be considered as strategic value chains for Europe.

“The European Green Deal without a solar value chain in Europe is not sustainable, if we want to achieve not only climate goals, but also bring significant economic benefits to Europeans,” added Vice Minister at Ministry of Energy of Lithuania, Rytis Kevelaitis. “Joint efforts to launch a solar manufacturing hub in Europe need initiatives like the ‘Solar Manufacturing Accelerator’. This will create new opportunities in terms of economic growth, job creation and innovation in Europe, as well as investments in R&D.”

According to a recently published 100% Renewable Europe report of SolarPower Europe and LUT, a 100% renewable energy system in Europe by 2040 or 2050 will be primarily a solar story. In their models solar will provide between 48-63% of electricity supply, depending on scenario, which would translate into up to 8.8 GW of installed solar power by 2050, compared to around a mere 150 GW today (see 100% Renewable Europe Primarily A Solar Story).