New global solar capacity additions hit 191 GW in 2022, says IRENA

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IRENA says developers installed 295 GW of renewable energy throughout the world in 2022, driving up global cumulative installed capacity by 9.6% to 3,372 GW. It was a year of record growth, largely based on newly installed PV systems, according to IRENA.

The organization says 191 GW of solar was installed last year. It notes that growth is still largely concentrated in a handful of countries and regions such as Asia, the United States, and Europe. Asia accounted for 60% of new capacity additions, where 1.63 TW of renewables are now installed.

China accounted for almost half of the new global renewables capacity in 2022, at 141 GW. A total of 57.3 GW were added in Europe in 2022 and 29.1 GW in North America, according to IRENA. Africa continued its steady growth at 2.7 GW, slightly above the figures for the previous year.

“This sustained record growth demonstrates the resilience of renewable energy amid the current energy crisis,” said IRENA Director General Francesco La Camera.

IRENA says hydropower still accounts for the largest share of installed renewables capacity at 1,255 GW. But last year, only 21 GW were added. Solar is catching up and last year passed the terawatt milestone of installed capacity.

IRENA has listed the top 10 global PV markets in terms of cumulative installed capacity:

  1. China – 392 GW
  2. United States – 111 GW
  3. Japan – 78.8 GW
  4. Germany – 66.5 GW
  5. India – 62.8 GW
  6. Australia – 26.7 GW
  7. Italy – 25 GW
  8. Brazil – 24 GW
  9. Netherlands – 22.5 GW
  10. South Korea – 20.9 GW

*This article was amended on 23/03/2023 to reflect that 57.3 GW were added in Europe in 2022 and 29.1 GW in North America, not the other way around, as previously reported.

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