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Milestone: Sharpest Ever Increase in Global Photovoltaic Output, 115 Gigawatt Increase Compared to Previous Year

North American Clean Energy

The cumulative nominal output of photovoltaic systems currently installed worldwide was around 627 gigawatts in 2019 with more new capacity installed than in any previous year This is illustrated in a new infographic from nbsp Kryptoszene de The development has not gone unnoticed on the stock exc......


Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jul 2, 2020 3:49 am GMT

Only in the world of renewable energy do we have groups like North American Clean Energy (NACE) citing metrics like the "cumulative nominal output" - three words which when combined make gibberish, but together might impress readers who are energy-illiterate.

Maybe NACE considered the phrase "global solar capacity", a real metric representing the ideal maximum output of all solar in the world combined, then realized everyone knows solar is incapable of actually generating its capacity. So maybe instead the group chose to whip up a new synonym for capacity - to confuse, rather than disappoint.

That seems like the most likely option. If so, we would need to adjust 627 gigawatts for solar's average capacity factor worldwide (11%), and we come up with 627 x .11 = 69 gigawatts, Divide that by average global primary power (117,000 gigawatts), and we'll know whether to be suitably impressed or not. On average, all solar in the world combined is providing 69/117,000 = six ten-thousandths of global primary power at any given moment.

In all fairness, I didn't think it would be that much.

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