China connects 13.5GW of solar PV – in a single month

Chinese market outlook - graph - AECEA

China has installed 24.4 gigawatts (GW) of solar PV in the first six months of 2017, including an extraordinary 13.5GW in the month of June alone, as developers rushed to complete installations to capitalise on a higher feed in tariff that expired on July 1.

According to the data from the China PV Industry Association (CPIA), the 24.4GW of new capacity – a combination of large and small scale – represented an increase of 9 per cent year on year. It is also equivalent capacity to Australia’s entire coal fleet, and more than four times its installed solar capacity.

The boost in installations was also accompanied by a 28 per cent jump in the amount of solar cells produced in the first half to 32GW, while the output of solar modules rose 26 per cent to 34GW.

“June was prime time for developers making sure their systems were connected to the grid in order to enjoy the 2016 FITs, which were reduced between 13 and 19 per cent from July 1,” consultant Frank Haugwitz wrote recently.

Haugwitz, the director of Asia Europe Clean Energy (Solar) Advisory Co, says China is now poised to smash through its 2020 target of 105GW total capacity for solar, with installations already reaching 102GW, and another 20GW to 25GW  expected in each of the following three years.

That, he says, will take total capacity by the end of 2020 to between 166GW and 187GW – more than three times the total capacity of Australia’s grid – all in solar.

Total installed solar PV power generation capacity amounts to 101.82GW, made up of 84.39GW at utility-scale  and 14.73GW distributed solar PV.




9 responses to “China connects 13.5GW of solar PV – in a single month”

  1. trackdaze Avatar

    Thats 8 coal plants they wont be getting.

  2. David leitch Avatar
    David leitch

    Last year there was a very sharp slump in installations in H2. And I won’t be surprised if there is a very “notional” concept of complete in some of the installations. However the point is that the H2 slump, likely this year as well, produces cheap panels everywhere else in the world including nearby markets like Australia.

    1. Tim Robertson Avatar
      Tim Robertson

      That may be just the news local small-scale installers need to hear in wake of the STC tumble…

    2. stephan011 Avatar

      People thought it would be, but It wasn’t that sharp. IIRC, 20 GW in the first half 14 GW in the second.

  3. MaxG Avatar

    Well, given the confidentiality note at the bottom of the graph… are you supposed to publish it? Permission for it?

  4. MaxG Avatar

    Go China… I love ’em for that.

  5. Earl D. Avatar
    Earl D.

    Crazy! Worldwide cumulative installation didn’t even cross the 13GW mark until ~2010, which took almost 40 years to reach. Seven years later one country (albeit a rather large one) can bring that much on-line in a single month?

    Gentlemen, mark your calendar. We have just crossed the tipping-point.

    1. Coley Avatar

      Aye, but I can remember a time when politicians and CEOs of power companies, and many in the media, laughed outright at the thought of solar panels and ‘windmills’ being a significant producer of electricity!
      Funnily enough, there seems to be a significant number of the dumb gits still around!
      Never underestimate the power of stuffed brown envelopes, (or the digital equivelant)

  6. jeffhre Avatar

    Too bad they can’t do 13.5 GW for every month in 2017! It would equal over half of the installed global base of 306 GW in 2016.

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