Covid-19 weekly round-up: It is still unclear how the crisis will play out on various solar segments

14 Jul, 2020

Solar panels are going cheap at the moment. You might want to take advantage before the great Covid-19 sale comes to an end.
Image: Jeremy Buckingham

Although analyst Wood Mackenzie and industry body the U.S. Energy Storage Association have reported positive first-quarter figures – and expect year-on-year growth from 2020 – industry insiders have warned the Covid-19 crisis, which started to affect the industry at the end of March, will “more seriously affect Q2.”

In an opinion piece for pv magazine India, Amplus Solar’s Naveen Arora said the demand slump driven by Covid-19 shutdowns, combined with Chinese oversupply, has caused solar module prices to fall 6-8% since February with a further 3-3.5% reduction possible into the next quarter. However, she cautioned, Chinese end-of-year demand and the project extensions permitted Indian developers affected by the public health crisis could again change the supply and demand equilibrium in the final three months of the year, possibly leading module prices to recover.

The International Energy Agency’s World Energy Investment 2020 report sees the organization add its voice to the rising number of commentators predicting the quick turnaround times for renewable energy projects – and attractive economics – will see clean power facilities act as a magnet for investors as the world energy system recovers from Covid-19.

The Climate-KIC, low-carbon ‘knowledge-community’ has invited eco-friendly start-ups and SMEs affected by the Covid-19 crisis to apply for up to €500,000 of investment after the organization’s backer, the EU’s European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) made €60 million of extra funding available. The grant funding will convert into a stake in recipient businesses at a future point. EU-backed renewable energy business advisory service Get.invest today also launched a suite of tools tailored to help clean energy firms overcome the impact of Covid-19, with services also offered to companies in Africa and the Caribbean.

Jared McKenzie, CEO of Illinois-based residential PV installer Headline Solar has told pv magazine USA the mid-March to mid-April period during which the state was subject to Covid-19 stay-at-home orders, has been the busiest sales period in the company’s history.


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