IEA PVPS Press Release
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International Energy Agency
Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme
Publication: Trends 2021

For the 26th consecutive year, the IEA-PVPS Trends report is now available. This document provides the most comprehensive global overview of the development of the Photovoltaics sector, covering policies, drivers, technologies, statistics and industry analysis.

This report is for anyone wishing to better understand PV and its developing role in the energy sector.

The publication is available here.

“The market grew again to 145 GW in 2020 and even more was installed in 2021 despite the pandemic. PV is unstoppable.”
“Following COP 26 the world is seeking solutions and PV offers us a realistic, reliable pathway for decarbonization.”
“If I had to name one group of people who should definitely read this Trends report, I would say climate policy negotiators”
 ~ Gaëtan Masson, IEA PVPS Task 1 Manager
Download your copy
Highlights from the 2021 Trends include:
  • China continues to drive the global PV market, but the US, the EU and Japan also play a key role. Only India experienced a major market downturn due to legal and regulatory constraints.
  • PV development is now widespread across all continents, though Africa and some parts of Latin America, Europe and Asia are yet to embrace the solar-driven energy transition.
  • Policies are increasingly complex, as are the barriers to PV adoption: the more mainstream PV becomes, the more we encounter new barriers stifling its development.
  • The PV fleet at the end of 2020 saves 860 million tons of CO2 equivalent annually, which is proportionally more than its share in the electricity mix. PV is a key tool to decarbonize the economy at large (not only the electricity sector), competitively enabling the shift from fossil fuels to electricity for transport and building applications.
  • As the PV sector rapidly expands, it contributes increasingly to the global economy, including the creation of millions of jobs.
In summary, PV is now a mainstream source of electricity, at the core of the energy transition. While more is still required to efficiently tackle the challenges of climate change, the accelerating and unstoppable global development of PV presents an immediate pathway to decarbonization. This is not just a future prospect but a current reality in 2021.
The International Energy Agency (IEA), founded in 1974, is an autonomous body within the framework of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The Technology Collaboration Program (TCP) was created with a belief that the future of energy security and sustainability starts with global collaboration. The program is made up of thousands of experts across government, academia, and industry dedicated to advancing common research and the application of specific energy technologies.
The IEA Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme (IEA PVPS) is one of the TCP’s within the IEA and was established in 1993. The mission of the programme is to “enhance the international collaborative efforts which facilitate the role of photovoltaic solar energy as a cornerstone in the transition to sustainable energy systems.” In order to achieve this, the Programme’s participants have undertaken a variety of joint research projects in PV power systems applications. The overall programme is headed by an Executive Committee, comprised of one delegate from each country or organisation member, which designates distinct. ‘Tasks,’ that may be research projects or activity areas. This report has been prepared under Task 1, which deals with market and industry analysis, strategic research and facilitates the exchange and dissemination of information arising from the overall IEA PVPS Programme. 

The IEA PVPS participating countries are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, and the United States of America. The European Commission and Solar Power Europe are also members. 
Contact for further information :
Gaëtan Masson, Task 1 Operating Agent
Izumi Kaizuka, Task 1 Deputy Operating Agent:
Copyright © 2021 IEA PVPS, All rights reserved.

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