EPIA・Greenpeace(2008): Solar Generation V - 2008.
Solar electricity for over one billion people and two million jobs by 2020
European Photovoltaic Industry Association


Foreword . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 4
Executive Summary . . . . . . . . . . . p. 7
PV Solar Electricity . frequently asked questions . . p. 11
Solar Basics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 13
The Solar Power Market . . . . . . . . . . p. 21
The Solar Future . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 29
Costs and Competitiveness . . . . . . . . p. 39
Solar Benefits . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 47
Policy Drivers . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 57

Executive Summary

Global Status of Solar Photovoltaics

The solar electricity market is booming. By the end of 2007, the cumulative installed capacity of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems around the world had reached more than 9,200 MW. This compares with a figure of 1,200 MW at the end of 2000. Installations of PV cells and modules around the world have been growing at an average annual rate of more than 35% since 1998.

Such has been the growth in the solar electricity industry that it is now worth more than an annual Euro 13 billion.

Competition among the major manufacturers has become increasingly intense, with new players entering the market as the potential for PV opens up. The worldwide photovoltaics industry, particularly in Europe, the USA, China and Japan, is investing heavily in new production facilities and technologies. At the same time, political support for the development of solar electricity has led to far-reaching promotional frameworks being put in place in a number of countries, notably Germany, Spain, Italy, France, South Korea, USA, etc.

Since the first edition of Solar Generation was published in 2001, the global PV market has continued to expand at more than the rate then
predicted (see table below). Although in some countries progress has been slower than expected, others have exceeded expectations. The German
market in particular has consistently performed at the upper limit of its projected expansion rate. Other countries outside the OECD nations are also showing their determination to develop a solar-powered future.

This clear commercial and political commitment to the expansion of the PV industry means that the current surge of activity in the solar electricity sector represents merely a foretaste of the massive transformation and expansion expected to occur over the coming
decades. The target: the realisation of a common goal of substantially increasing the penetration of solar electricity into the global energy mix, whilst also cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Much work still needs to be done to turn potential into reality. One crucial step is to bring a far broader range of actors into the sector, particularly in the investment, finance, marketing and retail areas. At the same time, there is a need to transmit to as wide an audience as
possible, the message that solar electricity will bring socio-economic, industrial and environmental benefits to regions which proactively encourage its uptake.

Solar Generation: A Projection to 2030

Numerous qualitative analyses about the potential market development of solar photovoltaics have been published in the past. The aim here has been to compile a detailed quantitative knowledge base, coupled with clearly defined and realistic assumptions from which extrapolations could be made on the likely development of the solar electricity market up to 2030 and beyond.

Taking its lead from success stories like those in Germany or Spain, this EPIA/Greenpeace report looks forward to what solar power could achieve - given the right market conditions and an anticipated fall in costs . over the first three decades of the twenty-first century. As well as projections for installed capacity and energy output, it makes assessments of the level of investment required, the number of jobs which would be created, and the crucial effect which an increased input from solar electricity will have on greenhouse gas emissions.

Annual MW Installations Capacity: Market versus ‘Solar Generation’ Scenario Predictions since 2001
Year 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Market Result 334 439 594 1,052 1,320 1,603 2,392      
SG I 2001 MW 331 408 518 659 838 1,060 1,340 1,700 2,150 2,810
SG II 2004 MW         985 1,283 1,675 2,190 2,877 3,634
SG III 2006 MW           1,883 2,540 3,420 4,630 5,550
SG IV 2007 MW             2,179 3,129 4,339 5,650
SG V 2008 MW               4,175 5,160 6,950

This scenario for the year 2030, is based on the following core inputs:

The following assumptions have been employed:

Global electricity consumption:
Two different assumptions are made for the expected growth in electricity demand. The reference version is based on the International Energy Agency’s latest World Energy Outlook (WEO 2007). An alternative version is based on the Greenpeace/European Renewable Energy Council Energy [R]evolution Report, which assumes extensive energy efficiency measures. The PV
contribution is therefore higher under this projection.

Carbon dioxide savings: Over the whole scenario period, it is estimated that an average of 0.6 kg of CO2 would be saved per kilowatt hour of output from a solar generator.

There are two versions of the scenario: an Advanced Scenario based on the assumption that additional support mechanisms will lead to dynamic worldwide growth; a Moderate Scenario which assumes a continuing but lower level of political commitment. The growth rates assumed in these scenarios vary from 40% reducing to 15% over the scenario period (2030) under the Advanced version, 30% reducing to 10% under the Moderate version.

The two scenario versions are also divided in two ways . into the four main global market divisions (consumer applications, grid-connected, remote
industrial and off-grid rural), and into the regions of the world as defined in projections of future electricity demand made by the International Energy Agency.

Solar Generation: Key Results of the EPIA/Greenpeace Analysis

The key results of the EPIA/Greenpeace scenario clearly show that, even from a relatively low baseline, solar electricity has the potential to make a major contribution to both future global electricity supply and the mitigation of climate change. The figures below are for the Advanced Scenario:

Global Solar Electricity Output in 2030
8.9 % of global electricity demand from PV - demand forecast from IEA Reference Scenario
13.8 % of global electricity demand from PV - demand forecast from the Greenpeace Energy [R]evolution Scenario

Detailed Projections for 2030
PV systems cumulative capacity 1,864 GW
Electricity production 2,646 TWh
Grid-connected consumers 1,280 million
Off-grid consumers 3,216 million
Employment potential 10 million jobs
Market value Euro 454 billion per annum
Cost of solar electricity Euro 7-13 per kWh depending on location
Cumulative CO2 savings 8,953 million tonnes of CO2

Solar Generation: PV’s Contribution to Global Electricity Supply

The EPIA/Greenpeace Advanced Scenario shows that by the year 2030, PV systems could be generating approximately 2,600 TWh of electricity around the world. This means that, assuming a serious commitment is made to energy efficiency, enough solar power would be produced globally in twenty-five years’ time to satisfy the electricity needs of almost 14% of the world’s population.

The capacity of annually installed solar power systems would reach 281 GW by 2030. About 60% of this would be in the grid-connected market, mainly in industrialised countries. The total number of people by then covering their own electricity from a grid-connected solar system would reach 1,280 million.

Although the key markets are currently located mainly in the industrialised world, a global shift will result in a significant share . about 20% or an annual market of 56 GW . being taken by the developing world for rural electrification in 2030. Since system sizes are much smaller, and the population density greater, this means that up to 3.2 billion people in developing countries would by then be using solar electricity. This
would represent a major breakthrough for the technology from its present emerging status.

Solar Generation: PV’s Contribution to Industry, Employment and the Environment

As the annual PV market could grow to 281 GW, the PV industry is facing great chances. For the job seekers of the third decade of the 21st century, there would be a major contribution towards their employment prospects. On the assumption that more jobs are created in the installation and servicing of PV systems than in their manufacture, the result is that by 2030, around 10 million full-time jobs would have
been created by the development of solar power around the world. The majority of those would be in installation and marketing.

By 2030, solar PV would also have had one other important effect. In environmental terms, it would be reducing annual CO2 emissions by 1.6 billion t. This reduction is equivalent to the output from 450 coalfired power plants. Cumulative CO2 savings from solar electricity generation would have reached a level of 9 billion t.

Policy Recommendations

In order to supply more than 3 billion people with solar electricity by the year 2030, a major shift in energy policy will be needed. Experience over the past few years has demonstrated the effectiveness of joint industrial and political commitment to achieving greater penetration of solar electricity into the energy mix at local, national, regional and global levels.

A number of key political actions are required:

Our goal now must be to mobilise the necessary industrial, political and end-user commitment to this technology and, more importantly, the services it provides. We must redouble our efforts to ensure that the generation born today benefits from all the socio-economic and environmental benefits that solar electricity offers.

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