Solar Energy

Solar Energy on the Westcoast

The United States has a huge potential to use more solar energy due to its favorable solar radiation conditions and large investment needs in the energy sector. In recent years, government incentives for renewable energy at both the federal and state level have spurred the installation of new solar energy capacity. Considering decreasing prices for solar panels based on a lower demand in Europe, the U.S. is likely to become one of the biggest players worldwide. German companies can expect to find very attractive markets to expand their businesses in states like California, Arizona, New Mexico or New Jersey. 

Key Facts about the U.S. Solar Market

  • More than 100,000 Americans work in the solar industry (25,000 workers in California), in more than 5,000 companies.
  • PV installations grew 109% in 2011 to reach 1,855 MW, which represents 7.0% of all PV globally, up from 887 MW and 5.0% of global installations in 2010.
  • Cumulative PV capacity operating in the U.S. now stands at 3,954 MW, enough to power more than 800,000 American homes.
  • There were 28 individual PV projects over 10 MW each completed in 2011, up from only two in 2009.
  • Eight states installed over 50 MW each in 2011. Installation totals in 2011 increased in 18 of the 23 states
  • Weighted average PV system prices fell 20% in 2011 as a combined result of lower component prices, improved installation efficiency, and a shift toward larger systems.
  • Over 61,000 individual PV systems were installed in the U.S. in 2011, bringing the total number of operating systems in the U.S. to more than 214,000.
  • Overall, the value of systems installed in the U.S. in 2011climbed to $8.4 billion, up from $5 billion in 2010.
  • GTM forecasts U.S. market share to increase steadily over the next five years, ultimately reaching nearly 15% in 2016 – at which point we anticipate the U.S. and China to be the leading markets in the world as European markets slow down

Quelle: GTM Research/SEIA, US Solar Market Insight, 2011 Year-In-Review, Executive Summary

GACC of the Western U.S. – A strong, local partner for your business

The German American Chamber of Commerce, Inc. in San Francisco has years of experience assisting German solar companies in establishing their businesses in the U.S. We stand beside you as a strong partner in the U.S. market, lending our local experience and international network to your company.


If you would like information about your U.S. market entry or expansion, please contact us:

Mirko Wutzler
Director, Business Development
Tel.: +1 (415) 248-1243

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