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Installed capacity within the Australian solar power market has grown at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 80% between 2006 and 2011.
The overall growth rate for the 20 year period from 1992 to 2011 is close to 32% compounded annually. This indicates towards the greater boost given in the last five to six years to the solar energy development during which it grew at more than twice the rate of the total growth.
The last couple of years (2010 & 2011) have truly been the solar years for Australia with solar announcing its arrival in a grand manner. More than 1000 MW was added in these two years which has given solar power development the required momentum.
This was achieved through a change in policies and a greater shift of focus of the government from other renewable sources to solar energy.
The addition of such high installed capacity in the country catapulted its status to the 10th position among the solar countries in the world bringing the newly adopted technology to the fore front.
An even more encouraging fact was that Australians put more household solar panel systems on their roofs than anyone else in the world last year, new data from the Clean Energy Regulator and the International Energy Agency show.
This statistic astonished many in the solar industry, given Australia's small population compared with renewable energy market leaders such as European Union countries, China, Japan and the United States. About 392,500 new household solar systems were switched on last year.
Australia still generates far less solar electricity than those countries, but the nation's preference for small, individual panels mounted on detached, owner-occupied suburban homes means a greater number of systems were actually installed.
Altogether, 785 megawatts of solar power was installed in Australia last year, virtually all in the form of small-scale panel systems on homes and businesses.
For more information on the Australian solar power market, see the latest research: Australian Solar Power Market
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