The U.S. photovoltaic market will become the largest market for annual PV installations in 2013 – overtaking Germany, Italy and Japan, according to a new report from ABI Research.
An estimated 900 MW of installed capacity came online during 2010 in the U.S., and that number is expected to almost double this year. Renewable energy technologies are receiving a strong push in the U.S., with utility, industrial and commercial PV installations expected to drive growth.
‘The U.S. federal government continues to focus on developing energy sources other than fossil fuels by extending its investment tax credits to 2016, and U.S. states are setting ambitious renewable portfolio standards (RPS),’ says Josh Flood, senior analyst at ABI Research.
Thirty U.S. states currently have an RPS in place, ABI Research notes. In addition, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) clarified a ruling last year that previously had inhibited states from setting feed-in tariffs (FITs) for renewable energy technologies.
ABI Research predicts that a number of states will introduce FITs before the end of 2012. California – which has a RPS target of 33% by 2020 – is likely to be the first state to introduce FITs for PV power generation, according to the report.
The U.S. PV market is set to witness explosive growth over the next few years, with a forecast of 5 GW installed during 2013. This is particularly good news for companies such as First Solar, SunPower Corp. and Solar World, ABI Research says.
‘These PV companies can expect to achieve considerable growth from the U.S. market,’ Flood predicts. ‘In total, the three will add a combined 3,000 MW of additional manufacturing capacity for PV modules during 2011 and 2012.’