The installed capacity of utility-scale solar power in the USA has passed the 3GW milestone, according to solar project tracking firm Wiki-Solar.
China reached the 3GW mark in June. Both the USA and China surpassing the total installed in Germany, which is at 2.95GW, with China on 3.78GW and the US on 3.05GW. In Germany, feed-in tariff eligibility was removed from installations of 10MW and over last year, which is thought to have slowed down the rate of new additions.
Wiki-Solar defines utility-scale solar as a PV power plant above 10MWp in size, but the firm is now considering altering the definition to include plants over 5MWp.
Analysis by NPD Solarbuzz revealed this week that among the US states, California had installed 1.6GW of PV capacity including utility-scale, residential and commercial, in the 12 months ending in the second quarter of 2013, with 1.1GW forecast for the second half of the year. In fact California currently dominates the US for installed PV to the extent that 53% of all new installations in the US for the second quarter of 2013 were in California.
In the UK demand passed 1GW for this year, including residential and commercial rooftops as well as utility scale power plants.
According to the Wiki-Solar findings, around 15.9GWp of utility-scale PV has been installed around the world. The world’s top 20 countries with the highest amount of utility-scale PV accounted for 15.7GWp of that figure.
Philip Wolfe, founder of Wiki-Solar, said: “The detailed report on the US market we have just released shows that the average system size in the US is higher than any other country and it is the new capacity added to mega projects like Agua Caliente, California Valley, Topaz and Catalina which has enabled this record growth in 2013.”