3 February 2017
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The Solar PV Market is Growing Exponentially Shows SMI Quarterly Report

The solar panel market is growing exponentially, accounting for 64% of all new electric capacity in the US in the first quarter of 2016, according to a recent SMI Quarterly report.

The Greentech Media and SEIA’s 2016 quarterly SMR report showed extremely precise results, proving that the solar panel industry is growing more rapidly than expected. Investments in the renewable technology have overshadowed investments in other energy sources, with solar energy investment accounting for 64% of all new electric capacity in the US.

Solar PV is Adding More Capacity than All Other Energy Sources Combined

In the first quarter of 2016, solar energy companies have added more capacity than natural gas, coal, nuclear and the wind industry combined. According to the report, the U.S. has installed as much as 1,665 MW of solar PV in the first quarter of 2016. This shows an overall increase of 24% compared to the solar PV installed in the first quarter of 2015.

Furthermore, the cumulative number of the solar installations in the U.S. managed to eclipse one million. This represents s 27.5 GW in operating capacity. If we compare this figure with previous years, the exponential growth of the solar power is clearly seen. If accounted for all the project, solar is still adding more capacity than any other energy source installed in the U.S., ranking it as the largest driver of capacity.

Solar Growth SMI SMR SEIA GTM Report Statistic

Why the Rapid Growth?

One of the main reasons behind this rapid growth in investment is the extension of the federal Investment Tax Credit. It enabled the U.S. solar PV market to become a goliath among energy sources. According to SMR, this extension will not only have an effect on the annual market in 2016, but it will also help the solar PV market continue to grow throughout this decade.

The demand of solar PV is also rising, resulting in a state of transition in the U.S. solar market. The Southeast, states where the current solar capacity stands at or below 10 MW, will see a sudden increase by more than a tenfold.

The first quarter of 2016 marks the tenth consecutive quarter of solar power in which more than a gigawatt of PV was installed. Furthermore, predictions show that by 2021, the generating capacity of solar panels will be more than 6 percent, which shows an extreme growth, especially in comparison to the 0.3 percent entering the current decade.

The future of Solar

This news is further confirmation of a recent BNEF report, which predicts that in the next few decades Solar energy and other renewable energy will account for more than 60-70 percent of the power generation in the U.S. and abroad.

New reports and data constantly prove the fact that Solar Power is becoming the right future investment for everyone. In just a few years solar energy has become far more accessible than before, resulting in a tremendous market growth. The SMI report further proves this. Furthermore, according to the longer term forecasts of SEIA and GTM, the industry will nearly quadruple by 2021. This will not only double the employment in the solar industry but is also predicted to generate as much as $132 billion in investment, making solar power energy more easily available and affordable than ever.