China's Solar Capacity Is Aniticipated To Reach 1,000 GW By 2026
As per Rystad Energy, China's installed solar capacity will double to 1,000 gigatonnes (GW) by the end of 2026 as the world's second-largest economy continues to increase investment in renewables. Beijing had set a target of increasing the country's installed wind and solar capacity to more than 1,200 GW by 2030.
By the end of last year, China had installed 365 GW of wind power capacity and 392 GW of solar capacity, accounting for roughly one-third of the global total. The country's installed capacity is forecast to exceed 500 GW by the end of 2023, according to the note.
"China's national program to build out solar capacity, launched in June 2021, has led to a significant boost in large-scale projects," said Yicong Zhu, senior renewables and power analyst at Rystad.
During the first half of 2023, China's investment in solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity was 3.4 times greater than its investment in thermal power, according to the note. However, due to geographical advantages, utility-scale solar PV development that produces 10 megawatts (MW) or more of energy has been centered on its less populous northwestern parts.
"There is limited land availability and costs are high in coastal regions, so large-scale utility solar PV developments are not feasible," the note added.
The difficulties have prepared the way for more investment in rooftop solar, with regions such as Henan, Shandong, and Hubei seeing a boom in installations, according to Rystad. Despite the expansion, some provinces are falling short of their installed capacity targets, according to the note.
"Overall, all provinces will need to bring at least 250 GW of solar PV capacity online by the end of 2025 to achieve their respective targets," Rystad noted