Zero Footprint
Follow
Find tag "solar"
875 views | +0 today
Zero Footprint
How we can and must reduce the ecological footprint of all humanity all the way down to zero.
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Daniel LaLiberte
Scoop.it!

Carbon Footprint of Solar Panels Made in China Far Exceeds Panels Made in Europe - CleanTechies

Carbon Footprint of Solar Panels Made in China Far Exceeds Panels Made in Europe - CleanTechies | Zero Footprint | Scoop.it
How green is the manufacturing process for solar panels? According to a new study from Northwestern University and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, solar panels made in China and used in Europe have a carbon footprint that is about twice as high as solar panels made locally in Europe.

 

The study found that although shifting manufacturing to China might be economically attractive, “it is actually less sustainable from the life cycle energy and environmental perspective – especially under the motivation of using solar panels for a more sustainable future”.

 

According to the study, a solar panel made in China would need to be used for 20 to 30 percent longer than a European made panel to produce energy to cancel out the energy used to make it.

 

The study did not include the energy cost to transport the solar panels to their final destination. Had this cost been included in the study, the gap would be magnified further.

Daniel LaLiberte's insight:

It is critical to include the full life cycle energy costs for all products, particularly energy related products.  But note that the solar panels from China do eventually cancel out the energy used to make them.  It just takes longer.

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by Daniel LaLiberte from @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy
Scoop.it!

Solar Energy : This Is What A Disruptive Technology Looks Like | Resilience.org

Solar Energy : This Is What A Disruptive Technology Looks Like | Resilience.org | Zero Footprint | Scoop.it

A picture is worth a thousand words. 

 

This graph compares the price history of solar energy to conventional energy sources. The comparison is striking. This is what a disruptive technology looks like. While conventional energy prices remained pretty flat in inflation adjusted terms, the cost of solar is dropping,fast, and is likely to continue doing so as technology and manufacturing processes improve. The graph above charts the inflation adjusted price of different types of energy, not in terms of gallons, but in terms of gigajoules of energy (a gigajoule is one billion Joules, the standard metric unit for energy). Pricing energy commodities in terms of their energy content makes it easier to compare the relative cost of different sources of energy. While solar currently accounts for less than 1% of the energy supply, it is an exponentially improving technology, both in terms of price and pace of construction. Already it is approaching parity with other energy sources in the Western US. Assuming this trend continues for another 10 to 20 years, and there’s no reason not to, solar power will become 5 to 10 times more cost effective than it is today. This raises an interesting question. What happens if solar becomes an order of magnitude cheaper than other sources of power? This is the nature of disruptive technology. It represents such an improvement that it renders existing industries obsolete. We saw waves of disruption take place as the Internet upended entire industries. Expect to see a lot of this in the coming years.
Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Daniel LaLiberte's insight:

Notice the rapid fall in solar costs up until around 1988, and imagine how much better things would be now if we had continued on that path, which we finally resumed 2 decades later.

more...
No comment yet.