Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) predicts that 33.8 GW of new onshore wind farms, plus 1.7 GW of offshore wind, will be added globally in 2013. This compares with its median forecast of 36.7 GW of new photovoltaic capacity.
This year is set to be the first in which PV has added more MW of capacity than wind, BNEF says. In 2012, wind – onshore and offshore -Â added 46.6 GW, while PV added 30.5 GW – record figures in both cases. But this year, the market analysis firm says, a slowdown in the world's two largest wind markets, China and the U.S., is opening the way for the rapidly growing PV market to move ahead.
‘The dramatic cost reductions in PV, combined with new incentive regimes in Japan and China, are making possible further, strong growth in volumes,’ says Jenny Chase, head of solar analysis at BNEF. ‘Europe is a declining market because many countries there are rapidly moving away from incentives, but it will continue to see new PV capacity added.’
Despite the change in rankings for this year, the maturing sectors of onshore wind and PV will contribute almost equally to the world's new electricity capacity additions between now and 2030, BNEF says. It forecasts that wind will expand from 5% of the world's total installed power generation capacity in 2012 to 17% in 2030. PV, from a lower base of 2% in 2012, will grow to 16% by 2030.
Furthermore, after years of oversupply and consolidation, technology suppliers in both sectors may see a move back to profit this year, BNEF says.