PV could represent 25% of global electricity consumption in 2040.
Dr Winfreid Hoffmann, President, European Photovoltaic Industry Association.
Writing exclusively for PES, Dr. Winfried Hoffmann, President of the EPIA, discusses the current state of the industry and his hopes for a bright future…
The global photovoltaic sector has been growing significantly over the last eight years at an average rate of over 40%. In the 60s and 70s, the market developed on niche segments such as space solar cells. During the 80s and 90s several national R&D programmes mainly in Japan, Germany and the US allowed some market development for off-grid and consumer appliances. And since the turn of the century, the photovoltaic sector has entered a “transition phase” towards competitiveness in all market segments and in particular grid-connected applications (thanks to the development of market support programmes). Several leading markets have enabled this transition, these being Germany, Japan and the US (they represent 2/3 of the global market). Due to the grown awareness in the public and the political commitment in these three countries, renewable energies are supported by politically-driven programmes. Local content and a large amount of ‘added value’ is needed to legitimate these politics.