A recent report of the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK) shows that Germany is ready to install a record of 8 GW of solar throughout 2012, compared to 7.5 GW last year. Although 2011 was not a bright year for the U.S. in terms of solar installations, research analysts forecast the U.S. solar industry to reach installations close to 3 GW in 2012. China, the fastest growing market for the photovoltaic industry, is currently estimated to generate 900 GW of power, but expected to have demand for almost 1,600 GW by 2020.
Close to one half of the world’s photovoltaic cells are installed in Germany, which makes it the birthplace of the solar industry. The German government has subsidized businesses in this sector through the Renewable Energy Act over the past ten years. Among other green technologies in Germany, solar energy has risen to the forefront of global awareness to increase energy efficiency.
“The reason for the German government supporting solar energy stems from the result of a very good cooperation between industry and commerce. It is the foundation for renewable energy creation as part of our commitment to future generations and also to increase energy efficiency for sustainability“
After the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan a year ago, Chancellor Angela Merkel has pushed the cabinet to phase out nuclear power and replace it with renewable energy sources by 2022. As of right now the goals are:
o to reduce CO2 emissions by 40% until 2020 and by 80% until 2050 (compared to
o to increase share of renewable energies up to 35% (17% as of today)
“People have to learn how to deal with the new technologies in this field and also accept possible changes in their behavior”, said Dr. Hartmut Grewe, Senior Manager of Energiewaechter GmbH, a consulting service in the areas of renewable energy.
As the U.S. Senate is making another attempt to vote on the Renewable Energy Incentives, including the highly controversial solar investment tax credit (ITC), one of the main topics still focuses on how German companies would approach the U.S. market considering the wide variety of incentives throughout the U.S. Roland Wigger, Executive Director of Abakus Solar AG, said, “We are looking at the U.S. as a place with many markets. The U.S. is not as segmented as our markets are, but is on a large scale utility driven, with great incentives, and that’s where we would like to analyze business models and see opportunities in each of these segments: residential, commercial, inventory, utility.”
After the one-day conference, the GACC offered an exclusive networking reception with all panelists present and gave an ideal opportunity to the 120 attendees to meet the German delegation and discuss the latest industry developments.
The workshop “German American Solar Energy Conference” is part of the Renewable Energy Export Initiative of the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology based on the resolution of the German Parliament.
For the detailed program, agenda and image gallery please go to: http://www.gaccny.com/
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The German American Chambers of Commerce (GACCs) in Atlanta,
Chicago, Houston, New York, Philadelphia and San Francisco all work
together. With approximately 2,500
members the GACCs offer a broad spectrum of activities and services.