The world’s solar superpower saw the amount of new capacity added in the first three months of the year fall 24% from the same period of 2019 as 1.75 TWh of solar electricity was curtailed, but the National Energy Administration expects both statistics to improve as China exits the public health crisis.
Having envisioned an 18-month transition to grid parity solar in the world’s biggest PV marketplace, developers of large scale projects are now reportedly being told the subsidy taps will be switched off at the end of December.
The nation’s thriving distributed generation market is flying, as was evident at last week’s Intersolar South America trade show. The sector seems unconcerned by mooted changes to net metering incentives in the new year and when even an environmental non-believer like President Bolsonaro is on side, it is difficult to be pessimistic.
The energy transition is accelerating, Ernst & Young global energy leader Benoit Laclau has warned grid operators, thanks to the confluence of digitization, decentralization and decarbonization. Traditional utilities must get with the program or be swept aside.
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has awarded AU$9.6 million in grants for five projects and seven studies into the role of distributed generation assets on the grid – and how to expand their penetration.
Representations by big beasts of global PV win only a partial concession from the authorities in Beijing, with officials agreeing to honor FIT payments for any ground mount projects connected during the next three weeks.
Of the 9.65 GW of solar PV China installed in the first quarter of 2018, 7.68 GW comprised distributed generation (DG) systems, reports China’s National Energy Administration (NEA). Changes to the country’s PV policy have also been proposed.
Following the surprise removal of a grace period for PV rooftop projects last month, China reportedly saw over 500 MW of DG solar grid connected on December 29, after developers worked to secure 2017 FIT rates. Overall, EnergyTrend estimates DG capacity to be over 19 GW in 2017.
As Ireland’s Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment is considering a new renewable electricity support scheme to replace the existing REFIT regime, Friends of the Earth voices concerns that the new scheme may fail to consider rooftop installations. The environmental NGO argues that introduction of a subsidy for rooftop solar PV is vital for putting the country on a decarbonization course.
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