The People’s Republic of China has increased its target for installed solar power by 50%. It now aims to have 15 GW of installed solar generating capacity, by 2015, Reuters reports.
The move comes just months after China doubled its solar goal from 5 GW to 10 GW earlier this year, following the partial meltdown of the Fukishama nuclear plant in Japan.
How can China be so ambitious? It’s thought that the revised target has been made possible by an uptick in solar installations thanks to new government supports for the industry. China’s government introduced its first unified national feed-in tariff for solar energy in August, guaranteeing a price significantly higher for solar power than was previously being paid by various state agencies. Note that feed-in tariffs are believed to have driven three-quarters of global photovoltaic solar power installations.
To give you a sense of the scale of what China’s trying to achieve, consider this: at the end of 2010, the country had less than 1 GW of installed solar capacity. A government think-tank reported in August that it expected there to be 2 GW of installed solar capacity by the end of 2011.