After a red-hot final three months of 2016, solar power growth slowed down in the first quarter this year, according to a new report from the Solar Energy Industries Association and GTM Research. The U.S. market installed 2,044 MWdc of solar PV, a 2% decline year-over-year. The dip in that rate of growth is perhaps understandable in light of the industry’s incredible 2016, when the U.S. solar market had its biggest year ever, nearly doubling its previous record.
But there was some good news too:
• In the first quarter, solar made up 30% of new electricity-generating capacity brought on line, making it the number-two source.
• Total installed solar photo-voltaic capacity is expected to nearly triple over the next five years, with over 17 GW of solar PV capacity installed annually by 2022.
• For the first time, prices for utility-scale systems dropped below $1-per-watt.