3.13

Gigawatts

of completed solar projects (p. 15) since founding in 2005

1.4

Million Metric Tons

of CO2 emissions avoided

156

Megawatts

of solar assets sold since 2018

View Our Analysis

The Path to Drawdown: PV Solar Development

To solve climate change and remain below 1.5ºC of global warming, the globe needs to switch to generating power from fossil fuels to using 100% emissions free sources.

The largest source of this clean energy is the sun (barring advances in nuclear fusion). Photovoltaic or PV solar panels (the kind you see on rooftops) have emerged as the predominant way of capturing the sun's energy and converting it into electricity.

The industry has been growing fast and, as of 2020, solar panels are now the cheapest source of electricity in most places on earth.

Solar produces ~2% of global electricity today. According to Project Drawdown, to be on a path to remain under 1.5ºC of warming, utility scale solar (as opposed to rooftop solar) will need to be generating a combined ~26% of global electricity by 2050.

To get there, the PV solar industry is going to need to continue to massively scale over the few next decades:

  • <::marker> 720 TWh of solar electricity generated in 2019
  • <::marker> 28,200 TWh needed by 2050
  • <::marker> CAGR of 12.56% from 2019 - 2050

Another analysis from the IEA predicts that in order to reach a 100% clean electricity grid by 2050, annual solar panel manufacturing capacity will need to scale from 134 GWs in 2020 to 630 GWs in 2030 (p. 74).

What We Want to See Improve

Publish ESG Reports

While SOL includes brief descriptions of its environmental and social efforts in its SEC Form 20-F, we would like to see it issue stand-alone and in-depth annual ESG reports. This would allow shareholders to transparently evaluate SOL’s progress towards becoming a zero-emissions company.

Set Clear Sustainability Goals

With respect to energy and material inputs, SOL has significant opportunities to improve its efforts to achieve sustainable production. But currently investors have no way of evaluating SOL’s sustainable production goals.

Clean Supply Chain

We would like to see SOL insisting on an emissions-free supply chain from its business partners. At present, no such supply chain commitments exist. We believe ethical considerations, as well as the potential to proactively reduce supply chain risks from future carbon taxes, should drive SOL management to pursue these commitments.

Related Solar Energy Stocks in the Climate Index

View All Climate Index Stocks →

Allocated Company Description

2.00%

Enphase Energy (ENPH)

Enphase makes micro-inverters, which are critical components in making rooftop solar more efficient. It's a key solution to expanding rooftop solar

1.18%

SolarEdge Technologies (SEDG)

SolarEdge makes power optimizer, solar inverter and monitoring systems for rooftop solar. These are key equipment in making solar power more efficient

0.82%

First Solar (FSLR)

First Solar makes innovative solar panels from a single glass substrate, making it possible to make panels in one factory in 4.5 hours

0.76%

Sunrun (RUN)

Sunrun makes and installs residential solar energy systems. Solar is a crucial centerpiece of electrifying everything

0.36%

Daqo New Energy (DQ)

Daqo makes high-purity silicon that goes into solar panel. This is a critical ingredient in converting sunlight into electricity

0.36%

Sunpower (SPWR)

Sunpower offers residential and commercial solar power systems and solar storage. Rooftop solar PV is one of the keys to an emissions-free energy system

0.33%

Shoals Technologies Group, Inc. (SHLS)

Shoals makes all of the components necessary for solar PV systems to connect to the grid. They’re helping expand solar energy

0.31%

Sunnova (NOVA)

Sunnova provides residential solar and energy storage systems in the United States. Both are critical for electrifying the energy system

0.17%

Array Technologies, Inc. (ARRY)

Array Technologies offers machine learning-based solutions that track the sun so that solar PV systems can generate more electricity

0.17%

Jinko Solar (JKS)

Jinko Solar is the largest solar panel maker in the world and heavy investor in solar R&D. They’re a key player in expanding solar energy

0.16%

Canadian Solar (CSIQ)

Canadian Solar makes and ships solar panels all over the world. This is critical for electrifying everything

0.14%

Gibraltar Industries, Inc. (ROCK)

Gibraltar Industries makes the mounting racks for solar panels that are tailor-made for the buildings and fields where solar systems will be placed

0.07%

Azure Power (AZRE)

Azure Power develops solar power for central and state government utilities in India. Solar power is a key centerpiece of a zero-emissions energy system

0.07%

Maxeon Solar Technologies, Ltd. (MAXN)

Maxeon Solar Technologies makes solar panels and related solar system components worldwide - a critical piece in a zero-emissions energy mix of the future

0.05%

FTC Solar, Inc. (FTCI)

FTC Solar offers solar tracker systems so that solar PV systems can produce more electricity. Expanding solar energy is key to a decarbonized world

0.03%

Renesola Power (SOL)

Renesola Power develops utility-scale solar projects in over 10 countries. This is the type of effort needed to scale solar power to electrify the grid

0.02%

iSun, Inc. (ISUN)

iSun is one of the biggest commercial solar developers in the US. They’re a valuable contributor to expanding solar power

0.02%

Orbital Energy Group, Inc. (OEG)

Orbital Energy offers engineering, construction, and maintenance for utility-scale solar systems. They help expand solar power

0.02%

SPI Energy Co., Ltd. (SPI)

SPI Energy develops solar PV solutions for businesses, residential, government and utility customers. Expanding solar is key to a clean energy system

0.02%

Sunworks (SUNW)

Sunworks makes solar power systems for a wide range of markets. Solar is a key zero-carbon energy source

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