Solar Posts 35% Jump in Q3 2023 - Smart Energy Decisions

Distributed Energy Resources, Solar, Sourcing Renewables  -  December 8, 2023

Solar Posts 35% Jump in Q3 2023

The U.S. solar industry posted a 35% year-over-year increase in the third quarter of 2023 with the addition of 6.5 GW of new electric generating capacity. This increase is attributed, in part, to the implementation of federal clean energy policies.

Growth for 2023 is expected to reach 33 GW of solar capacity, according to the U.S. Solar Market Insight Q4 2023  report from the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and Wood Mackenzie. The report notes that by 2050 solar is expected to be the largest source of generating capacity on the U.S. grid, despite economic challenges that are beginning to affect the solar and storage industry.

“Solar remains the fastest-growing energy source in the United States, and despite a difficult economic environment, this growth is expected to continue for years to come,” said SEIA president and CEO Abigail Ross Hopper. “To maintain this forecasted growth, we must modernize regulations and reduce bureaucratic roadblocks to make it easier for clean energy companies to invest capital and create jobs.”

The utility-scale segment posted its lowest level of new contracts signed in a quarter since 2018, impacted by elevated financing costs, transformer shortages, and interconnection bottlenecks. However, improvements in the module supply chain have led to a record 12 GW of utility-scale deployment in the first 9 months of 2023.

California and Texas led the nation for new solar installations in Q3, but Indiana ranked third with 663 megawatts (MW) of new capacity as several large utility-scale projects came online. Fourteen states and Puerto Rico installed more than 100 MW of new solar capacity in Q3.

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