OVERVIEW - European cos rise back up list of top utility-scale solar developers

First Solar-powered PV park in California. Author: U.S. Department of the Interior.

May 4 (Renewables Now) - The emergence of unsubsidised projects is helping European companies to rise back up the list of the world’s top utility-scale solar project developers, according to the latest data by Wiki-Solar.org.

The developers with more than 1 GW alternating current (AC) of cumulative installed volume are listed in the following table.

Rank Project developer Capacity to date (MW) Change since end-2018 (MW)
1 First Solar (US) 5,174 1,205
2 Canadian Solar (CA) 4,118 259
3 NextEra Energy (US) 3,408 1,216
4 SunEdison (US) 3,123 257
5 Enel Green Power (IT) 3,092 603
6 State Power Investment Corp (CN) 3,025 221
7 ACME Solar (IN) 2,806 730
8 Adani (IN) 2,790 361
9 Engie (FR) 2,167 906
10 Azure Power (IN) 1,786 795
11 Tata Power (IN) 1,733 549
12 Shunfeng (CN) 1,532  
13 Cypress Creek (US) 1,503 209
14 Juwi (DE) 1,463 545
15 Trina Solar (CN) 1,357 840
16 China Three Gorges New Energy (CN) 1,281  
17 EDF Energies Nouvelles (FR) 1,267 428
18 Scatec Solar (NO) 1,256 622
19 Neoen (FR) 1,256 552
20 Enerparc (DE) 1,251 303
21 X-Elio (ES) 1,235 742
22 Shell (NL) 1,223 659
23 Abengoa Solar (ES) 1,179  
24 AES Corp (US) 1,166 393
25 Softbank (JP) 1,164 673
26 SunPower (US) 1,145 101
27 JinkoSolar (CN) 1,139 549
28 Hareon Solar (CN) 1,112 25
29 Sempra Energy (US) 1,090 264
30 ACWA Power (SA) 1,088 300
31 Greenko Energy (IN) 1,060 60
32 8minutenergy (US) 1,047 244
33 China Sinhyes (CN) 1,040 220
34 GCL-Poly Energy (HK) 1,033 20

North American companies retain the four top spots, with NextEra Energy ranked #1 for installations since the beginning of 2019, and First Solar still top by cumulative installed capacity. The strength of India’s domestic market is underlined again by the four Indian companies in the top 11 places in the table.

Europhiles will be pleased to see Enel retaining its elevated position, and developers like Engie and Juwi climbing up the list. These companies had expanded their activities into emerging overseas markets, during the stagnation of the European solar market, but are now also pursuing post-subsidy project opportunities closer to home. In addition, Europe claims four of last year’s top five climbers – X-Elio, Shell, Scatec Solar and Neoen – joining Trina, which enters this list having started to develop its own projects in China.

Japan’s Softbank has also been a significant climber, thanks substantially to its activities through SB Energy in India.

These figures are always calculated from the bottom up – totalling the AC capacity of commissioned projects in which the listed companies are known to have been participants. Wiki-Solar seeks to check statistics with these top developers, but its database does not list the developer for every project, and therefore the totals shown may be understated. In particular, Chinese companies should doubtless be more prominent, and China should probably have more than the eight companies shown on this list.

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Wiki-Solar tracks & supports global utility-scale photovoltaic power capacity deployment.

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