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Global Solar PV Market Report

Key Regional Markets


Solar PV Capacity


GDP (Current Prices) USD (2022)


GDP Growth Forecast (constant prices) (2023-2027)


Canadian Dollar
Country Credit Rating (S&P)


Renewable Energy capacity (2022)
Solar PV Share in Renewables (2022)


Renewable Energy Target
90% of Canada’s electricity to be generated from renewable and non- emitting resources by 2030, and 100% in the long-term
GDP Source: IMF WEO, S&P and IRENA

The solar PV market in Canada is relatively small, and the majority of the country’s solar power generation potential is confined to the southern provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. Despite considerable challenges posed by the global pandemic, the region’s commitment to wind and solar energy continued to grow significantly on the back of favourable policy frameworks to meet its net-zero goal by 2050.


  • Investment tax credits (ITCs) of up to 30% for renewable energy technologies, including solar, wind, and storage
  • Federal initiatives to support solar energy, including the $1.6 billion Smart Renewables and Electrification Pathways Program


  • Variation in funding and support for solar initiatives across different provinces
  • Lack of adequate transmission infrastructure to connect renewable power plants to major cities

Renewable Energy Mix

Source: IRENA Renewable Capacity Statistics April 2023

Among IEA countries, Canada has one of the cleanest electricity profiles due to its high proportion of nuclear and renewable hydropower. As part of a future mix of low- carbon electricity and to phase out coal power completely by 2030, Canada has started a refurbishment programme to extend the life of the current fleet of nuclear reactors.

As per IRENA data, in 2022, renewable hydropower held the majority share of ~79% of the total renewable installed capacity. Wind and solar had shares of around 14% and 4%, respectively. Most of the new wind and solar projects are located in Alberta, where a deregulated market for surplus power sales coupled with an established market for emissions credit valuation and trade have encouraged investment in renewable energy sources.

Installed Capacity: Status and Trend

Trend in Installed Solar PV Capacity

Source: IRENA Renewable Capacity Statistics April 2023

In 2022 Canada added a record 771MW of solar PV capacity, the highest within the last decade. However, according to the Canadian Renewable Energy Association (CanREA), the annual growth is insufficient to meet the country’s target of net-zero GHG emissions by 2050 as it would need to add 1.6GW of utility-scale solar annually to achieve its 2050 vision.

Currently, Ontario is the leading province in terms of renewable capacity (solar 2.6+GW, wind 5.5+GW), followed by Alberta (solar 1.2+GW, wind 2.7+GW). However, due to the phase-out of coal-fired electricity generation and its replacement with clean technologies, Alberta province is expected to overtake Ontario by 2025 to become the country’s leading province in terms of renewable activity. PV installation is projected to remain highly inconsistent among the provinces and territories in the upcoming years in the absence of a comprehensive pan-Canadian policy framework with annual capacity targets.

Demand Drivers

The growth of the solar PV industry in Canada fits into the broader context of initiatives to decarbonize the economy and arrive at a net-zero electricity supply by 2035. The federal, provincial, and territorial governments are working together to achieve the ambitious clean energy goal at the national level. To attract more businesses to invest in renewable energy and close the competitive gap with US companies, Canada introduced investment tax credits (ITCs) of up to 30% for renewable energy technologies, including solar, wind, and storage. This came into effect in March 2023 and will be available until 2034.

Lately, Corporate PPAs have gained significant traction in Canada, particularly as the C&I consumer segment continues to struggle with escalating energy expenses. They desperately seek opportunities to mitigate costs while meeting renewable energy targets. Among notable developments, in January 2023, Canadian power producer Capital Power Corp signed a 15-year deal to supply ~30MW of energy to Shaw Communications. Big organizations such as Microsoft signed 37MW solar PPA with ATCO Group to buy energy in the city of Calgary in the first half of 2022. During the same time frame, Scotiabank and Evolugen announced a ~40MW 15-year renewable energy PPA agreement in Alberta. PPAs have emerged as a primary driver for integrating new renewable energy sources in Alberta.

The March 2023 budget revealed that the Canadian government plans to seek input on creating a comprehensive strategy for carbon contracts for difference. The objective is to enhance the predictability of carbon pricing and facilitate investments required for fostering a thriving clean economy, thereby assisting Canada in achieving its climate objectives. These efforts will supplement the existing contracts for difference provided by the Canada Growth Fund.

Another factor contributing to the increased demand for solar in the region is the growing usage of energy storage. PV module manufacturers are investing heavily in energy storage technologies. Canadian Solar has doubled its energy storage shipments to 1.79GWh in 2022. CSI Energy Storage, a subsidiary of CSI Solar Co. Ltd., launched the SolBank, a proprietary designed and manufactured energy storage battery solution for utility-scale applications in September 2022.

Market Opportunity

Canada holds significant untapped potential for solar energy owing to its extensive land area. This provides considerable growth opportunities, as apart from Ontario no other provinces have made notable progress. Especially in the southern regions of Alberta and Saskatchewan, have yet to fully explore solar energy although they enjoy higher solar irradiation. The introduction of a new renewable energy strategy, the federal government’s commitment to a cleaner climate, and the adoption of advanced technologies will further enhance the prospects for solar deployment in Canada.

The federal and provincial governments in Canada are collaborating to achieve their ambitious clean energy objective on a national scale. The Canadian government has implemented various federal initiatives to support solar energy, including the $1.6 billion Smart Renewables and Electrification Pathways Program, the $500 million Low Carbon Economy Fund, the $520 million Clean Energy for Rural and Remote Communities program, and the $100 million Smart Grid program. Additionally, at the individual household level, the Canada Greener Homes Grant offers rebates of $1,000/kW for solar systems with a maximum size of 5kW.

Alberta, with its deregulated electricity market and ambitious carbon tax policy, has set a target to deploy 5GW of renewable energy by 2030. This initiative aims to ensure that 30% of the province’s electricity comes from renewable sources by the end of the decade while simultaneously phasing out coal power. As part of this renewable energy push, French renewables developer “Neoen” has commenced the construction of a 93MW solar project in Alberta. The solar plant is scheduled to get commissioned by the first quarter of 2024 and will contribute electricity to the local grid, which is managed by ATCO Electric.

In recent times, the integration of energy storage with solar power has become increasingly popular, serving as a valuable solution for enhancing grid flexibility, efficiency, and supporting Canada’s energy transition and decarbonization efforts. Notably, there are significant projects under development that combine solar and energy storage, such as Westbridge Energy Corporation’s Georgetown, Sunnynook, and Dolcy projects, which collectively incorporate 300MW of battery storage. Additionally, Jurassic Solar LP’s Jurassic Solar+ project includes 80MW of battery storage to complement its solar installation. These projects exemplify the growing trend of deploying energy storage alongside solar power to maximize the benefits of renewable energy integration. Recently, Westbridge Renewable Energy Corp. has started development of its fifth solar-plus-storage project in Alberta. The company is targeting the development of a 295MW solar PV plant with a 100MW/200MWh battery energy storage system at its Red Willow Project.


Source: BNEF Global PV Market Outlook
Note: The above data, as sourced from BNEF, are based on a ‘low’ investment scenario

The expansion of the solar PV market in Canada is consistent with broader initiatives to decarbonise the economy and achieve a net-zero electricity supply by 2035. According to the forecast of CanREA, over 2GW of solar would come online by 2025 based on the strong pipeline. In the longer term, Canada Energy Regulator (CER) anticipates the PV capacity to reach 27GW by 2050 even when no specific capacity targets for PV have yet been set at federal, provincial, or territorial level.

The relatively slow uptake of solar energy in Canada can be attributed in part to the variation in funding and support for solar initiatives across different provinces. Additionally, the overall cost of solar installations remains prohibitive for many homeowners and businesses, limiting widespread adoption. To address these challenges, it is imperative that the governments take a more proactive role in encouraging the transition to solar energy through subsidies and financial incentives.

One of the primary obstacles to renewable energy generation in Canada is to have adequate transmission infrastructure in place to transport the power from renewable powerplants in the countryside to the high demand zones, i.e., the densely populated cities. This poses a particular challenge for utility-scale solar PV projects. Canada has plans in place to improve transmission and infrastructure across the country, with a specific focus on key transmission lines in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Quebec. Budget 2023 outlines the next steps in the government’s plan to build Canada’s clean economy and have a cross-Canada electricity grid in place that is more sustainable, secure, and affordable. The measures proposed in this budget are important steps toward the goal of integrating increasing number of new renewable generation facilities into the  grid.