A report recently published by the Paris-based International Energy Agency has ranked the top 10 countries with the most solar power capacity.
The nonprofit’s 20th annual “Trends in Photovoltaic Applications” report, which was compiled using data tracked through 2014 (the most recent information available), indicates the 10 countries who are generating the rawest power from solar energy sources are:
- Germany: 38,250 megawatts
- China: 28,330 megawatts
- Japan: 23,409 megawatts
- Italy: 18,662 megawatts
- United State: 18,317 megawatts
- France: 5,678 megawatts
- Spain: 5,376 megawatts
- Australia: 4,130 megawatts
- Belgium: 3,156 megawatts
- South Korea: 2,398 megawatts
The total amount of solar power capacity on Earth, as of 2014, was 177,003 megawatts, according to the report. That is enough energy to successfully power 29 million homes, the report added.
“The year 2014 experienced a renewed growth of the PV market and confirmed the Asian leadership on the PV market and industry,” according to the report. “PV is entering rapidly into a new era where the PV market will be concentrated in countries with energy needs. … The road will be long before PV will represent a major source of electricity in most countries, but as some European countries have shown in recent years, PV has the ability to continue progressing fast.”
The list of the top 10 solar power-generating countries, however, was disparate from the report’s list of countries that exhibited the strongest solar energy markets in 2014. Data contained in the report indicated that those countries were:
- United States
- United Kingdom
- South Korea
- South Africa
“The number of countries covering more than 1% of their electricity supply from PV has increased to above 20 and 2014 has been the first year, where PV has had a share of more than 1% of the global electricity supply,” Stefan Nowak, chairman of IEA’s Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme, said in the report’s foreword. “Altogether, these are encouraging signs of a maturing industry which is however only at the early beginning of its future market relevance.”
The entire report can be accessed at www.iea-pvps.org.