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Why It Matters

The sun is the best source of renewable energy.

To solve climate change, our civilization needs to move away from burning fossil fuels to power our machinery, cars, homes, businesses, and buildings. Instead, we need to generate that power through renewable and clean sources. 

 

The best source of renewable energy is the sun. It's abundant, free, and we can easily convert into readily usable electricity. Photovoltaic or PV solar panels have emerged as the predominant way of doing just that. The silicon that makes up a solar panel harvests the photons streaming to earth from the sun. Inside the panel's hermetically sealed environment, photons energize electrons and create electrical current - from light to voltage. 

 

The solar industry has been growing fast and, according to the International Energy Agency, solar panels are now the cheapest source of electricity in most places on Earth. When installed as utility-scale solar farms, they emit 94% fewer greenhouse gases compared to coal plants while generating tens or hundreds of megawatts. 

Solar PV needs to keep scaling.

Solar has been doing the heavy-lifting in the transition to a decarbonized energy system, but we need it to do more.

According to Project Drawdown, 0.4% of global electricity is currently generated by both utility-scale and rooftop solar PV. If utility-scale solar can grow to 10% and rooftop solar to 7% of global electricity generation, they could avoid more than 60 gigatons of CO2 emissions by 2050.

 

These companies are making it happen.

To achieve that 2050 goal, we need companies that offer solar PV to expand as quickly as possible.

In the Climate Index, we take all of the companies that develop and manufacture solar systems that are traded on US stock markets. We exclude penny stocks whose share prices were lower than $0.50 in our last update. Finally, we also exclude companies that derive more revenue from fossil fuel-dependent business than they do from solar energy development or solar panel manufacturing.

If you are a Carbon Collective member, you own all of these companies through the Climate Index.

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