Solar Surge

Global Rise in Sun-Generated Power




Last year, the U.S. joined Germany, Italy, China and Japan in producing more than 10 gigawatts of solar production nationwide. Now, other countries have awakened to the opportunity and are on their way to catching up. The popular Scandinavian retailer IKEA has sold $10,000 solar panels in 17 British outlets.

Peru recently started a National Photovoltaic Household Electrification Program to connect 2 million of its poorest residents with solar power. In the first phase, 1,601 solar panels were installed to power 126 impoverished communities. The plan is to install about 12,500 photovoltaic systems for 500,000 households at an overall cost of $200 million.

Earth Hour India is helping citizens to switch to solar energy in villages that previously had no electricity. Woodlands stores, in partnership with World Wildlife Foundation-India, has launched a collection drive across the country, inspiring individuals to donate to help light up more than 100 households in three villages in Madhya Pradesh with solar power. The residents had traditionally depended on forest resources for their energy needs.

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More from Natural Awakenings

Climate Consensus

Scientists are warning that if humans don’t reduce greenhouse gas emissions drastically and maintain natural carbon sinks like forests within 10 years, the impact on Earth’s climate will be catastrophic.

Big Melt

A thaw over the tip of the planet this year warmed the surface of the North Pole as high as 35 degrees—a once-rare event that has occurred during four of the last five winters.

Sinking City

By factoring in the settling of artificial landfill as water aquifers empty, scientists now estimate that 166 square miles of land around the bay is in jeopardy of being underwater by 2100.

In Vitro Corals

Frustrated by vanishing reefs, scientists are fertilizing coral sperm and eggs in labs and returning them to the wild.

Algae Alchemy

Two Dutch designers are processing live algae into material that can be used for 3-D printing of such items as shampoo bottles and trash bins.
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