Supply chain problems push many solar project deadlines to 2025 or later
Prices for renewable power continued to climb in the first quarter as a supply and demand imbalance hit the industry, according to Edison Energy’s “Q1 Renewables Market Update.”
Demand for renewables remained strong, with corporations having ambitious, publicly stated renewables procurement goals, retailers seeking to offer renewable products and utilities required to meet renewables requirements.
On the supply side, however, while many projects were marketed, those able to commit to firm prices without sharing significant risks were hard to find. Developers face rising cost inputs that are challenging to hedge.
One example was transportation, where some equipment manufacturers have made the cost of shipping a market-indexed, rather than a fixed price. Uncertainty over tariffs was another variable at play, as the quarter closed out with the opening of a federal government investigation into solar panel tariff circumvention, expected to put the availability and cost of approximately 80% of PV module supply in question for months.
While buyers are often interested in nearer-term online dates, relatively few projects on the market today expect to come online before the end of 2024. Compared to Q4 2021, there were 30% fewer projects offering anticipated online dates in 2023 and a 30% increase in those offering anticipated 2024 online dates. The number of projects expecting to come online in 2025 or later spiked by 90%.
“The first quarter closed out with a significant shock to the US solar market, and it looks like we will be facing uncertainty for several more months,” said Mary Kate Francis, senior director of renewable supply at Edison Energy (which does business in Europe as Altenex Energy). “Nonetheless, we continue to see buyer interest in renewables. We are working with buyers to find options that work for them, and contract around risk as needed to bring projects to fruition.”
The Edison Energy and Altenex Energy teams will share further insights on the renewables marketplace in two upcoming webinars. Learn more about the PPA landscape, pricing trends, and anticipations for the market in 2022 across North America and Europe.
Register for the Edison Energy webinar on US findings at 1 pm ET on Wednesday, April 27 here†
News item from Edison Energy