Many people in the world are turning against solar panels because they believe that solar panels use a lot of energy which still causes long term damage to the environment.
People maintain that 200w solar panel produce hazardous waste and fragile materials during construction.
Solar panels can be bad for the environment in two ways. After a useful life of 25 to 30 years, they are difficult to recycle and may be stored as waste, which is bad for the environment. Solar panel production also uses a lot of energy, which mostly comes from fossil fuels.
However, studies don’t show any indication that solar panels cause any harm to the Earth when they are in use, apart from the problem of waste storage. In fact, many studies show how much more efficient they are compared to other forms of power such as fossil fuels.
One of the big problem is that solar panels need a lot of fossil fuel energy to create them, so they do not offer any long term solution to the world’s energy problem.
It’s just they are cleaner for the environment at the moment. One solution could be to re-use or recycle existing solar panels, but this isn’t as easy as it seems.
Solar panels can have a negative effect on the environment if they are taken out of commission or are improperly disposed of.
It is important to recycle solar cells in order to reduce hazardous waste in landfills. One way to properly dispose of solar cells is by using them as raw material for new panels and other products.
The actual solar cells degrade in performance due to several factors. The whole panels flex under environmental conditions, like wind and temperature extremes.
Silicon crystals are neither mineral or metallic, but a cross between the two. Nevertheless, like rocks they contract and expand, which loosens the lattice and reduces their efficiency.
The tiny connections linking the small cells also degrade. The overall effect is to lose about 0.8% of solar output watts per year.
Lastly, UV rays break down the lattice structure gradually making the PV effect less effective.
Solar panels cannot be made without fossil fuels. While it is possible to extract silicon from the ground and create solar cells, the process is very expensive and energy intensive.
This is the great paradox: we need fossil fuel energy to create renewable energy devices such as solar panels and wind turbines.
Some countries are trying to develop renewable energy infrastructure without relying on fossil fuels, but it is proving to be impossible.
In fact, the production of solar cells relies on fossil fuel energy more than any other traditional power generation source. If this was not true, we would have reached 100% renewable energy by now.
So what does this mean for solar panels? It means that they will always have a negative effect on the environment in terms of greenhouse gases and other pollutants.
For example, electric cars are touted as using nothing but green energy, but in fact the overall carbon foot-print is similar to that of a conventional car.
In fact, the production of solar panels runs much more off fossil fuels than it does on renewable energy provided by solar panels or wind turbines.
Solar panels are also not very efficient in terms of electricity generation. They don’t work during the night, and they are only about 20% efficient when they do generate electricity.
We need to remember that they don’t store enough energy to run our entire homes for a whole day without any backup energy sources. Batteries also need fossil fuels to work, and they do not run without electricity.
The main benefit of solar panels is that they are sustainable in the long term. However, the energy they generate is sustainable and will never disappear from the world’s markets, only its abundance will decrease over time.