Austria has connected to the grid new solar photovoltaic (PV) systems with a total capacity of 1 GW-1.4 GW in 2022, which exceeds the solar additions in any other year before, according to estimates by the country's solar industry association PV Austria.
The country is on the way to the 2023 goals, but it has to make sure that the expansion goals are further increased every year, said PV Austria's Vera Immitzer.
The solar boom is likely to continue beyond this year, but the weak power grids and the lack of grid connection permits are causing bottlenecks, according to the association.
Austria approved its long-awaited Renewables Expansion Law (EAG) a year ago in a bid to promote the expansion of renewables. With the law, the Alpine country introduced a market premium for large-scale clean power plants which complements the investment subsidy granted for the construction of small plants.
Under its 2030 strategy, the Alpine country aims to raise the share of renewables to 100% by the end of this decade from 75% currently and new solar capacity should produce about 11 TWh of the 27 TWh needed to reach the goal.
The country's largest solar power plant feeding electricity directly into the grid is a 17.2-MW system in the state of Styria that was put into operation by local power company Energie Steiermark last December. The solar park was built on a 21-hectare (51.89 acres) plot at a former coal mine in the municipalities of Baernbach and Rosental and is expected to produce 18 million kWh of clean power annually.
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