December 7 (Renewables Now) - The total grid-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity in France reached 8,766 MW at the end of September 2018, official statistics show.
At the end of September, France had a total of 418,330 grid-connected solar plants after commissioning 16,122 plants with a combined capacity of 700 MW in the first three quarters of the year. In the third quarter alone, the country put on stream 215 MW of fresh capacity, rising from 185 MW a year earlier.
According to the data provided by the French energy ministry’s Department of Data and Statistical Studies (SDES), the highest number of grid-connected PV parks commissioned through September was in the south of mainland France, mostly in Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes, New Aquitaine and Occitanie regions. Almost two-thirds of the newly-commissioned plants have capacities of at least 250 kW.
Solar power output in January-September amounted to 8.1 TWh, registering a 12% year-on-year increase. Photovoltaics supplied 2.3% of the country’s electricity demand during the nine-month period.
At the end of September, France had a solar project pipeline of 3,800 MW. About 1,100 MW of these already have signed grid-connection contracts.