GTM Research: Global solar capacity to rival nuclear by end of 2017

Though it has slightly downgraded its prediction for global demand in 2017 – from 85.4 to 81.1 GW – GTM Research states that 2017 will still be another record year for PV installations, with annual demand breaking the 80 GW barrier for the first time.

The report from GTM also notes that including 2017’s expected installations, solar’s global capacity will stand at around 390 GW, approaching that of nuclear energy, which stands at 391.5 GW, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute.

While this is comparison is only in terms of capacity, and nuclear is still a much larger energy source in terms of generation – where nuclear produces around 11% of global electricity supply compared with PV’s 1.8%, the statistic still demonstrates solar’s impressive growth in recent years.

In its report, GTM also notes that solar’s growth rate and cost reduction in recent years has exceeded all predictions, and that the technology will likely reach 871 GW installed capacity by 2022, more than double that of current nuclear installations.