Brazil’s Installed PV Capacity Reaches 1.3GW

In the fourth quarter of 2021 alone, around 3GW of new PV systems were installed in the country. About 8.4GW of PV capacity currently comes from solar installations up to 5MW in size and is net metered.

Brazil’s installed PV capacity has just passed the historic 13GW mark. At the end of August, the country had 10GW of installed solar power capacity, which means more than 3GW of new PV systems have been connected to the grid in the past three months alone.

Since 2012, solar power has brought in more than BRL 66.3 billion ($11.6 billion) in new investment in Brazil and created nearly 390,000 jobs, according to the Brazilian solar energy association Absolar.

Rodrigo Sauaia, CEO of Absolar, noted that photovoltaics are helping the country to diversify its electricity supply, reduce pressure on water resources and mitigate the risk of further increases in electricity bills. “The price of electricity from large-scale solar power plants is ten times lower than today’s fossil thermal power plants or imports from neighboring countries,” he said. “Because of the versatility and flexibility of solar technology, it can A home or business is transformed into a small power station that generates clean, renewable and affordable electricity. Even for a large-scale solar power station, it takes less than 18 months. Therefore, solar is recognized as the champion in the speed of construction of the new generation of power stations,” added Sauaia.

Brazil has an installed capacity of 4.6GW of large-scale solar power plants, equivalent to 2.4% of the country’s total electricity. Since 2012, large-scale solar power plants have brought more than 23.9 billion reais in new investment and more than 138,000 jobs to Brazil. Large-scale solar power plants are currently the sixth largest source of electricity generation in Brazil, with locations in northeastern Brazil (Bahia, Ceara, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Piauí and Rio Grande do Norte), southeastern Nine states (Minas Gerais and São Paulo) and the Midwest (Tocantins) have projects in operation. The distributed generation sector – which includes all PV systems up to 5MW in size in Brazil and operating under net metering – has a total installed solar capacity of 8.4GW. This equates to more than BRL 42.4 billion in investment and more than 251,000 jobs since 2012.

If the installed capacity of large-scale power stations and the power generation of solar projects themselves are added, solar power now ranks fifth in Brazil’s power mix. The installed capacity of solar has surpassed that of thermal power plants powered by oil and other fossil fuels, which account for 9.1GW of Brazil’s electricity mix.

In addition to being competitive and economical, solar installations can be installed quickly and help reduce electricity costs by up to 90 percent, according to Absolar board chairman Ronaldo Koloszuk. “Competitive and clean electricity is essential for the country to recover its economy and be able to grow. Solar energy [electricity] is part of the solution and a real engine of opportunity and new jobs,” Koloszuk concluded.

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