International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
IRENA is an intergovernmental organization that supports countries in their transition to a sustainable energy future and serves as the principal platform for international cooperation, centre of excellence, and repository of policy, technology, resource and financial knowledge on renewable energy.
By the end of 2016, the global cumulative installed capacity for photovoltaic (PV) power had reached an estimated 290 gigawatts (GW), indicating nearly 50 times the growth in cumulative installed capacity within a decade. The uptrend of new installed capacity is expected to be maintained in the years to come as new markets expand.
The decrease in PV system LCOE over the past decade has been driven by substantial PV module cost reductions, although projected reductions in the coming decade will be largely driven by a decrease in Balance of System (BoS) costs.
With PV systems rapidly becoming a very competitive power supply option more efforts should be made to ensure that these systems deliver as expected throughout their lifetime. Credibility on the technology must be enhanced, and the risk for investors, policy makers and consumers alike must be reduced.
Together with IRENA, DNV GL was the contributing editor in writing the report about quality infrastructures for PV systems. Authors from all over the globe (total 30) worked together with IRENA to produce a detailed report on how to develop guidelines for quality infrastructures for PV systems, going beyond the standard quality assurance approach for the construction of new generation assets.
The implementation of a comprehensive QA framework requires a physical and institutional infrastructure, referred to as quality infrastructure (QI). QI achieves a positive economic balance by increasing revenues for various actors across the value chain, improving consumer protection and reducing the carbon footprint.
QI comprises the entire institutional network and legal framework necessary to regulate, formulate, edit, and implement standards for the common and repeated use of products and services. It also includes the provision of evidence for its fulfillment, including testing, certification, metrology and accreditation.