Solar Industry Grows 45% in 2013
by Jiyan Wei, BuildZoom
This past December, we published an article explaining the overall growth we observed within the solar industry. A quarter removed from 2013, we’ll take a look back at how solar installation performed in 2013.
In 2013, we observed that the total number permits issued for solar projects, increased by 45% over the previous year.
Nearly all growth within this sector could be attributed to photovoltaic projects; the total number of permits issued for solar thermal projects actually decreased by 15%, from 2012 to 2013.
Given the significant difference between the median price of photovoltaic and solar thermal projects (illustrated in the following graph), the year-over-year growth within the sector can be considered even more impressive.
From a regional standpoint, California dominated the rest of the nation, in terms of overall permits issued for solar projects. Collectively speaking, California, Arizona, Texas and Florida accounted for nearly 75% of all the solar permits we identified (from an overall set that spans 600 cities and counties across 35 states). This number may be skewed based on regional differences in how solar installation projects are regulated.
Arizona and Florida actually took a step back in 2013 while New York, Washington, Oregon and Maryland all took a step forward.
In terms of the service providers within the sector, SolarCity is the 800 pound gorilla although relative newcomer Vivint Solar, burst onto the scene in 2013 to take second place.