According to the International Energy Agency, renewable power capacity is set to expand by 50% between 2019 and 2024. This increase of 1,200 GW is equivalent to the current total power capacity of the United States. Solar is expected to account for nearly 60% of the anticipated growth and onshore wind 25%.
Steel will play an important role in all renewables, including and especially solar and wind. Each new MW of solar power requires between 35 to 45 tons of steel, and each new MW of wind power requires 120 to 180 tons of steel.
The solar market is divided into two areas. The first are smaller-scale rooftop panels mounted on homes, museums and stadiums. The second is utility-scale projects, which are larger consumers of steel. These plants produce a standard 100 to 300 MW of energy while some in development are approaching 1000 MW.