New Zealand has made an ambitious goal to build a million solar panels by 2020.
The government has committed to build the country’s first 100,000 solar panels in 2020, with the goal of achieving 100,300 panels by 2025.
The new target is in line with plans for a 500 megawatt solar power plant in the country, and will provide about 3% of the nation’s power by 2025, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
According to Bloomberg, the new targets are expected to increase the national grid capacity by 40% over 2020, to nearly 7,600 gigawatts, with about 2,500 megawatts installed by 2025 and another 400 megawatts by 2035.
While the new target of 100,200 panels by 2021 is ambitious, it’s not the first time the country has achieved such an ambitious target.
In 2007, New Zealand’s electricity market was still in its infancy.
In 2006, the country launched a pilot project to install solar panels on public buildings.
But those panels were not installed in large numbers.
In fact, according a 2011 report by the New Zealand Electricity Research Council, New South Wales, had the highest installed solar capacity per capita in the world at 2.5 gigawatts.
Since 2007, however, New England states have seen a huge surge in solar power generation, and in 2015, New York announced plans to build 200 megawatts of solar power plants, which would have been the largest installed solar power in the US.
So while the solar energy targets in New South and New York are ambitious, they are not unprecedented.
Solar panels have been installed in many countries since the 1950s, with most of them having been installed at the end of the century, according Bloomberg New Economy.
“The solar energy boom is largely the result of government policies, including subsidies and a lack of competition,” Bloomberg New energy Finance analyst Paul Kuklinski wrote in a report last year.
“In the US, for example, the government has been subsidizing solar installations for decades, and subsidies were even higher for wind and solar power at the height of the renewable energy boom in the early 2000s.”