According to a study by Oyster Bay, N.Y.-based NextGen Research titled "The Global Photovoltaic Market: Sunny Prospects for Energy Independence Through Solar Power," demand for photovoltaic (PV) power will increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of nearly 24% from 2008 to 2013, with markedly stronger growth starting in 2011 after the global economy rebounds from the ongoing global recession. Driving the installation and use of photovoltaics are concerns over climate change and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, as well as the drive for energy independence, which has become a matter of national security for many countries. Furthermore, the development of a domestic PV industry is seen as a promising means of economic stimulation during a difficult fiscal period, as well as a way to transition to a green economy.

Larry Fisher, research director of NextGen Research, says, "Federal, state, and local governments provide economic support to help alternative energy sources like PV achieve parity, the point at which the cost of generating electricity from renewable sources equals that of electricity generated through the use of conventional sources, like coal or natural gas. That support is crucial, at least until the PV industry can achieve the necessary economies of scale to compete with standard, greenhouse gas-emitting energy sources.

He goes on to note, "Feed-in tariffs have been effective in promoting PV power generation in Germany, Italy, and elsewhere; these tariffs mandate a baseline price at which the local utility must purchase excess electricity from a residential PV system. The United States offers a 30% tax credit for consumers installing a PV system, while many U.S. states also offer tax incentives, as well as rebates, grants and loans, to help support the growth and use of photovoltaics."

Source: NextGen Research