Renewable energy helps sustain energy in a way that is protective of the environment. However, the renewable energy market is equally just as important to the stability of the financial market. Specifically, solar energy has made a rapid expansion on our planet during the past decade. Recently, the renewable source of energy surpassed the growth of wind energy across the globe.
The Immense Growth of Solar Energy
This year makes the first time that solar energy growth has beaten out its largest global competitor, wind energy. Last year, new solar photovoltaic capacity growth reached 36.7 GW. On the other hand, wind energy growth was only predicted to be 35.5 GW. Wind energy growth was expected to be 33.8 GW from mainland growth and a small 1.7 GW growth from offshore infrastructure.
Growth in the solar energy market is largely due to the release of cheaper materials that are used in the production of photovoltaic installations. Reduced costs mean more capacitors can be installed for a fraction of the original cost. Furthermore, China and Japan are proving to be expansive new sectors of growth for solar energy. The impressive growth coming from these two countries in the solar market is an impact of the increased incentives.
While solar energy has certainly taken off, another significant reason for the new record is that wind energy growth is slowing down.
Policy Change Impacts Growth of Wind Energy
One of the largest reasons behind wind energy’s slowdown is the decrease in infrastructure construction in the United States and China. These two countries are the regions that play the most significant role in the slowdown due to their energy policies. For example, in the United States, the Production Tax Credit has caused uncertainty in the energy market. In turn, this uncertainty means that renewable energy investments will decrease. Furthermore, reduced investments starts a chain reaction of employee layoffs and infrastructure closings.
Ultimately, when combined with the increased standards and policies in China, these countries reduced energy growth will decrease wind energy growth by over 25 percent in the coming years. Renewable energy corporations will look to continue growth in all sectors.
Will Wind Energy Still Be A Viable Source of Renewable Energy?
While wind energy may be second best at renewable energy growth across the globe, it will certainly not become a useless resource. The renewable energy markets tend to ebb and flow with booming periods followed by equally slow times. Even at market low points, the energy sector for wind energy is extensive. Corporations and smaller business all still remain competitive and profitable. Over time the renewable energy market should stabilize in the fields of solar and wind. Any instability in future markets will likely come from new technologies associated with novel renewable energy sources.
Overall, consumers should not feel that a reduced growth for wind energy means the end of that particular sector. However, they should consider other options if pursuing investments in new installations for growth in the sector.