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Photovoltaics as Game Changer

For several years now, investments in renewable energies in electricity generation have been far higher than investments in coal, natural gas, oil or nuclear energy. Since the year 2000, global solar energy production has increased by a factor of two hundred. While 500 gigawatts of photovoltaic capacity were installed worldwide at the end of 2018, ten terawatts are expected for 2030 and 30 to 70 terawatts for 2050.

Photovoltaics has therefore long ceased to be a niche product and is becoming a game changer of the global energy system. There are many reasons for this. On one hand, production costs have fallen significantly: while one kilowatt hour of solar power cost about one euro in Germany in 1990, today the costs are between 4 and 5 cents. On the other hand, storage options have also improved. "Photovoltaics are already competitive in many parts of the world. In the future, not only the electricity sector, but also transport, heating and industry will be supplied primarily by solar power," PV pioneer Dr. Gerhard Rimpler is convinced.

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