Rooftop solar has boomed, but soalr panels only last about 20 years. What happens to the waste?
Australia urgently needs to prepare for a coming tsunami of solar panel and battery waste.
The takeup of rooftop solar was much more rapid and widespread than many policymakers predicted.
AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts
Australia's consumer watchdog has concluded that rooftop solar incentives have distorted the market unfairly for those who cannot afford solar panels, and has recommended the scheme ends ten years early.
The latest research suggests that in Australia, rooftop solar photovoltaics are more likely to be adopted by middle-class households.
Households that are most likely to go solar are those that can afford solar panels, but aren't so rich that they don't have to worry about their electricity bill at all, says a survey of 8,000 homes.
Solar panels being installed in new housing under construction in Sacramento, Calif.
AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli
Environmentalists and climate hawks are cheering, but many experts aren't excited about the state making rooftop solar panels mandatory on most new homes beginning in 2020.
Could this monitor and window be combined with a solar panel?
Organic semiconductors could make possible energy-generating windows that double as movie screens or computer displays.
Looking through semitransparent cells – one day these could be big enough to make windows.
Solar windows would need to trap enough light to generate power, while letting through enough to keep buildings light. Thankfully, newly developed semitransparent cells offer to do just that.
Now that panel costs in U.S. will go up, will reflectors make a comeback?
Joshua M. Pearce
Raising the cost of solar panels coming to the US could rekindle interest in a simple but potentially significant technology: solar reflectors.
Blockchain technologies could help homeowners sell their green electricity to their neighbours.
Blockchain technology could be applied to our energy grids to make them smarter, and turn energy consumers into producers.
Most of the growing number of jobs in the solar industry have more to do with maintaining and installing panels than manufacturing them.
The Trump administration can boost domestic solar panel manufacturing without slapping duties on all imports.
The potential clean energy sources are all around Sydney, just waiting to be harnessed.
Collage by Rocco Furfaro
Sun, wind, waste biomass, geothermal, tides and waves: all these energy sources in Sydney's backyard add up to a zero-carbon energy solution for the city.
Many homes in remote Indigenous communities rely on wood or diesel for heating.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
More than 200 remote communities in Canada rely on diesel fuel for energy. Cleaner options could fuel a better quality of life.
The imposition of steep duties on imported solar panel components could jeopardize thousands of jobs in the industry.
A trade spat could jack up the cost of going solar, killing jobs and obstructing efforts to do something about climate change.
Solar panels are still a rarity in WA’s lower-income areas.
Western Australia has huge amounts of sunshine and wind, yet only 7% of its energy comes from renewables. What's more, most households in the poorest suburbs are still locked out of the solar panel boom.
Eclipses are fun, but no one wants to be left in the dark by a blackout.
The solar eclipse offered electricity network operators a "live drill" in how to cope with fluctuating output from renewable energy. They passed with flying colours.
A report released this week by the Australian Council of Social Service has pointed out that many vulnerable households cannot access rooftop solar and efficient appliances, describing the issue as a serious…
Solar PV outstripped coal as the leading source of new electricity generation worldwide last year.
AAP Image/Lukas Coch
Solar PV and wind energy have overtaken coal as the leading sources of new electricity generation worldwide, with falling prices and new storage technologies making clean energy ever more attainable.
Getting your strata committee to agree to solar panels is tricky, but it can be done.
Apartment-dwellers risk being left behind in the rooftop solar boom. But some projects are showing how apartments can join the transition to a distributed renewable energy future.
Some states are poised for a 500% growth in rooftop solar panels by 2030.
AAP Image/Tracy Nearmy
A new report predicts a boom in household solar and batteries as Australia's electricity networks move to a more sustainable footing, with some states poised for a 500% boost in rooftop solar.
Western Australia’s largest private solar array covers the roof of this food distribution centre in Perth’s south.
Despite its name, the National Electricity Market doesn't reach WA. But those charged with guiding the eastern states' energy transition should look west once in a while.
This array in Indiana is one of a growing number of “community solar gardens” in the US.
Without help, lower-income people could miss out on the clean energy revolution – hence the arrival of community projects aiming to boost access to solar panels, batteries and other green technology.