Monday, June 2, 2014

Germany's Solar Power


Solar panel installations in Germany. Flickr/CC BY-SA2.0 

Germany is saying "nein" to dirty energy by investing massively in solar energy, and the results are stunning: the country just broke the world record by producing 5.1 terrawatt hours of clean energy in July 2013 – that's more than 6 times the entire amount produced by the US of A! (Note: This is the most recent data I can find). 

If Germany can do it, why can’t a country like Malaysia where it is very sunny almost all the year round? In Malaysia, our priorities are always screwed up. While we continue to subsidize fossil fuels and embrace wasteful spending – we could have followed Germany's example. 

The country is showing the rest of the world including Malaysia what smart policies can do. 

Germany's not a very sunny place, yet it leads the world in solar power, showing that you don't have to sit on the equator in order to generate lots of clean power from the sun. 

In terms of total solar power capacity per capita, Germany overtakes every other country. At the end of 2012, it had approximately 400 MW of solar power capacity per million people, considerably more than #2 Italy at 267 MW per million people, #3 Belgium at 254 MW per million people, #4 Czech Republic at 204 MW per million, and #5 Greece at 143 MW per million people. The US of A came in at #20 with about 25 MW per million people! (Webpage 

Another amazing thing to note about Germany’s huge solar power capacity is that it’s mostly on the roofs of homes and businesses.

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