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Solar momentum continues to accelerate

Nuno Marques / Unsplash
Dec 06, 2023 By WGSN Insider

Solar innovations from around the globe are making the sun an increasingly reliable and affordable power source. Invest in solar solutions now by reimagining product ranges powered by the sun and improve solar panel efficiency to power offices and factories.

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Why solar power?

By 2027, the power capacity of photovoltaic solar panels is set to overtake coal and natural gas globally. Solar power generation increased by 26% in 2022, with solar overtaking wind in terms of power generated for the first time in history In Lagos, Nigeria, an abrupt decision to end fuel subsidies (causing prices to spike by 175% overnight) means even more people are turning to solar generators in Africa’s largest city

Solar is too big an opportunity for brands to miss. The largest renewable energy source we’ve ever seen is staring us right in the face. It’s hard to think of an industry that can’t benefit.

- Matt Zara, Trend Forecaster & Editor, Consumer Tech

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Solar power in action

  • Researchers at Netaji Subhas University of Technology in India developed a solar-powered irrigation system to enhance crop growth in areas without access to an electrical grid, which has the potential to transform agriculture in off-grid regions

  • Solar roofs are appearing on mainstream electric cars, such as Hyundai’s Sonata (South Korea), Toyota’s Prius (Japan) and Volkswagen’s Microbus (Germany) models. While the roofs don’t provide enough energy to power cars entirely yet, they can extend range

  • The Cypriot government has announced a €30m ($32.4m) residential solar scheme launching in January 2024 that will help around 6,000 households lower electricity bills

  • Researchers at the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) found that solar panels with next-gen batteries now outperform diesel generators and they’re cheaper and more reliable

  • University of Cambridge (UK) researchers have developed a portable, floating, solar-powered device that turns contaminated water or seawater into hydrogen fuel and purified drinking water

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Subscribers can read the full December Sustainability Bulletin now. Not a subscriber? Request a demo today.

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