Germany’s solar capacity increased by 3GW in first half of 2010: more FiT cuts to come

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The German Federal network Agency has revealed that solar capacity increased by approximately 3GW in the first half of 2010 as solar panel operators rushed to register their installations before the feed-in tariff cuts.

Newly installed solar capacity reportedly rose by 1.7GW between January and May 2010, based on the analysis of the 85,000 applications received for solar installations during that period. The agency then received a further 50,000 applications in June alone, which should bring the total newly installed solar capacity over 3GW for the first six months.

“Applications were flooding in during the last weeks of June as many operators wanted to secure higher feed-in tariffs, which were reduced considerably from July 1 2010,” said Matthias Kurth, president of the Agency.

Further subsidy cuts, to take effect in 2011, will be linked to annual capacity growth with a target rate of 3,500MW, and are expected to be announced in October 2010. Experts estimate that subsidies paid to solar-power producers may still add up to €100 billion (US$125 billion) over the coming 20 years.

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In 2009, solar capacity increased by 3.8GW to a total of 9.8GW. Overall approximately 160,000 data reports have been filed with the Federal Network Agency in the past year.

Details of the PV system numbers are published on the website of the Federal Network Agency.

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