Objectives and roadmap
The objectives this subtask is addressing are the following:
- To establish and demonstrate, with comprehensive and transparent studies over the full life cycle, that PV systems are environmentally friendly compared to other energy systems.
- To show that future very large-scale implementation will provide clear environmental benefits.
The activities to achieve the announced objectives are the next:
- Compare the environmental impact profiles of PV technologies with those of other energy technologies
- Show the trends in PV environmental profiles by certain indicators (e.g., energy pay-back time, green-house gas emissions, environmental impacts, waste reduction, materials’ recycling and recovery).
- Continue showing such progress in annual updates over the course of Task 12 (5 years).
- Valuate the environmental benefits of PV by showing avoided impacts or avoided “external” costs.
- Credible communication and dissemination of results.
These activities have started with developing guidelines for a consistent methodological approach in LCI (Life Cycle Inventory) databases and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), enabling well-balanced and transparent comparisons among PV and other energy technologies. This will allow:
- Benchmarking of the PV technology performance against other energy technologies
- Monitoring and reporting progress in the environmental area (process and product)
- Benchmarking of individual company performance within the whole PV industry
- Credible communication and dissemination of results