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Continuing its rise as part of a diversified energy portfolio in an evolving power market, solar power accounted for nearly 40 percent of new electricity generating capacity added last year in the United States – the biggest annual share in the industry’s history, a recent report found. And Black & Veatch, a global leader in power infrastructure solutions, played a key role in helping address the demand.
According to the U.S. Solar Market Insight 2019 Year-in-Review report, released by the Solar Energy Industries Association and energy research consultant Wood Mackenzie, the U.S. solar market grew by 23 percent in 2019 over the previous year.
Newly released rankings by Solar Power World – the solar industry’s leading business-to-business publication, reflects that the industry’s top 10 contractors – among a list of more than 400 companies – combined to install 7,123,949 kilowatts, which converts to more than 7 gigawatts (GW) of solar power last year. The first quarter of 2020 was the country’s largest ever, with 3.6 GW of new solar capacity added already this year.
“In this transformational time in the electric industry, solar power continues to expand as a proven option for our clients to lower their carbon footprints with clean, affordable power,” said Mario Azar, President of Black & Veatch’s Power business. “Our growing volume of solar and wind, coupled with battery energy storage further underscores our deep commitment and expertise in delivering a wide variety of innovative solutions that contribute to a balanced generation portfolio globally.”
Wood Mackenzie predicts the U.S. will add more than 113 GW of solar additions from 2020 through 2025, with about 75 percent of those additions coming in the utility-scale market, which is Black & Veatch’s primary focus. The U.S. solar momentum continues to be driven by declining system costs and accelerating government and corporate mandates for clean energy.
Similarly, Wood Mackenzie predicts the global solar market will add 774 GW in 2020 thru 2025, with the global growth pausing this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic before growing at a 6% compound annual growth rate during the first half of the 2020s.
The “Top Solar Contractors” list developed by Solar Power World recognizes the achievements of U.S. solar developers, subcontractors and installers within the utility, commercial and residential markets while ranking contractors by kilowatts installed in the previous year.