A new report from SolarBuzz shows that large-scale solar PV installations in the UK have grown by an incredible 600% during the past 12 months, driving the UK to a record 1.45 GW of new solar PV capacity. According to the report, ground-mounted installations accounted for over 90% of new large-scale solar PV added in the UK in 2013. As a result, the UK is now ranked sixth globally for large-scale solar PV, and it’s one of six countries that approached a GW-level large-scale solar market in 2013.
In a statement on SolarBuzz’s website, Finlay Colville, Vice President said: ‘The fact that the large-scale segment grew by 600% in 2013 is largely a consequence of 2012 being low and 2013 being high. It also hides the outstanding dilemma for the UK solar PV industry that is the large-scale rooftop segment (better broken out when analysing the UK PV marketplace).
“However, comparative data aside, the large-scale ground-mount segment was the key factor in 2013 UK solar PV deployment getting to 1.45GW, well above many of the estimates within the UK at the start of 2013 and also well above many of the estimates from non-UK observers today.”
As a result of the increased investment, it is estimated that the cumulative PV in the UK has exceeded the 3GW level, with the 4GW marker set to be reached by 31 March 2014 securing what will be a record-breaking quarter for the UK PV industry.
Colville notes that the government is unlikely to make any further sweeping changes ahead of the May 2015 elections, so as a bonus the PV industry will be shielded somewhat from major political disturbances in 2014 and 2015.
“While there is no shortage of uncertainty that could offer pessimism to the UK breaking the 2GW demand figure in 2014, for those living in the UK it is hard to remember the last time the UK’s energy supply and long-term policies approached a position of stability that were completely risk free,” he noted.