Solar photovoltaics could become competitive with grid electricity in some European markets as early as 2013, and in all market segments across the continent by 2020, according to a new study by the European Photovoltaic Industry Association.
According to “Solar Photovoltaics Competing in the Energy Sector – On The Road to Competitiveness,” the cost of PV technology has fallen rapidly over the past 20 years, with the price of PV modules decreasing by over 20 percent every time the cumulative sold volume of PV modules has doubled. The report says there is a potential for a further 50 percent reduction in the cost of producing solar electricity.
Due to this price reduction, PV technology could achieve “dynamic grid parity” – the point at which the value of the long-term electricity revenues from a PV installation equals the long-term cost of receiving traditionally produced and supplied power over the grid – by 2013, in Italy’s commercial sector.
The industry could reach this point across Europe by 2020, the report says.
“Already today, PV electricity is cheaper than many people think,” said EPIA President Ingmar Wilhelm. “In the coming years it is going to get even cheaper thanks to ever-improving technology and economies of scale. As the price of electricity from conventional sources increases, solar PV will be become a fully competitive part of the energy mix.”
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