4Q 2020

Analyst Insight: Distributed Generation in North America

Global DER Deployment Insights

As a result of the ongoing pandemic and the recently witnessed second wave, global deployment of distributed generation (DG) technologies is anticipated to shrink by 23.6% in 2020 to 105.1 GW from Guidehouse Insights’ previous estimate of 137.6 GW. Global solar PV installations in 2020 will contribute to 37% of the total annual installed capacity at 39.1 GW. The Asia Pacific region is expected to decline by 32.7% while North America and Europe are expected to decrease by 15% each.

In North America, the need for resilience and deployments of distributed solar PV and solar plus storage should continue to drive demand for DER solutions across all major US states. Despite a short-term decline in DG deployments, decarbonization and clean technology pushes across major economies and regulatory bodies should encourage greater offset of DG for centralized generation technologies. According to Guidehouse Insights’ estimates, new DG deployments should continue to exceed the deployment of new centralized generation capacity growth.

This report focuses on seven key DG technologies, including solar PV, distributed wind, microturbines, stationary fuel cells, diesel gensets, natural gas gensets, and other renewables. Despite their distinct characteristics, all of these technologies usually operate behind the meter at customer facilities. In some cases, the technologies are owned and operated by actors outside traditional utilities, such as the technology owner or third-party service providers and aggregators.

Pages 12
Tables | Charts | Figures 4
  • What are the key drivers for different DG technologies in North America?
  • How are DG technologies evolving in terms of reliability and integration into the grid?
  • What are the major DG technology developments growth rates in North America?
  • How will DER deployments displace traditional, centralized generation in North America?
  • Solar developers, installers, and operators
  • Genset and microturbine vendors
  • Fuel cell vendors
  • Microgrid vendors
  • EV charging vendors and service providers
  • Energy suppliers, utilities, and grid operators
  • Energy service companies (ESCOs)
  • Government agencies
  • Investor community


Scope of the DER Database

Executive Summary

The DER Value Chain

Market Inflection Trends

Market Drivers and Barriers

North America DG Deployment Market Forecast

Key Recommendations

Acronyms and Resources