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The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
Despite a crisis-driven decline in investment, global production of photovoltaic (PV) cells grew by 10% in 2012. Europe remains leader in newly installed capacities with over half (51.7%) of the new worldwide capacity of 30 GW. This brought the total solar PV systems capacity in Europe to 69 GW, enough to meet 2.4% of Europe's electricity demand or to power all Italian households.
Within the EU, Germany remains on top with an additional 7.6 GW. Italy can now cover over 7% of its electricity demand thanks to newly installed 3.5 GW.
The increasing role of PV energy systems in the transition to a low carbon energy economy is evident: Production of PV cells and modules has gone from 46 MW in 1990 to 38.5 GW in 2012.
These are some of the highlights of the 12th edition of the PV Status Report released today on the occasion of the opening of the 28th European PV Solar Energy Conference, taking place in Paris from 30 September to 4 October.