The chief concern with renewable energy has always been the argument that renewable sources would never be able to power all of the energy needs of the world. A new report, however, has revealed that in a number of regions in the world, solar power alone could satisfy all their energy needs.
Using seven case studies, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF)-funded report, which received support from 3TIER, First Generation and First Solar, concluded that 100% of the estimated energy needs of these regions would be met with under 1% total land mass by 2050. This makes solar an option worth considering in several areas across the world.
The solar PV Atlas report found that solar energy is very compatible with environmental conservation. The seven case studies which were chosen characterized diversity in terms of economy and population but also shared a common characteristic – abundant sunshine.
Still, though Madagascar, Indonesia, South Africa, the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, Turkey, Morocco and Mexico have that one thing in common, solar energy production is not dependent on just that as government policies also play an important role; something the report indicated looked promising for all these regions.
Putting things into perspective, however, a 2010 study revealed that only 0.1% of the 16.7% renewable energy production the world over came from solar. The report thus clarifies that the 100% situation is quite possible without environmental impact, despite the fact that is not likely that these countries would be solely solar dependent by 2050. The report still estimated the more realistic target of 30% of world electricity production being powered by solar by 2050.