Unlike fossil fuels worryingly tipped to run out in about five decades, another vital energy source, perched some 150.76 million km away from the earth, will be available for a very long time to serve the world’s energy needs.
Experts estimate the sun will be abundant for about five billion years before it runs out of hydrogen - clearly enough time to tap into its rays for clean solar energy.
More than ever, many countries are looking up to the sun and other sources to spur humanity’s quest to attain a clean energy future.
Growth Of The Industry
For years now, renewable energy use has been increasing. It increased 3% in 2020 as demand for all other fuels declined. Accordingly, the share of renewables in global electricity generation jumped to 29% in 2020, up from 27% in 2019.
Solar is increasingly playing a key role in the renewable power generation mix. The International Energy Agency (IEA) reports that power generation from solar photovoltaic (PV) in 2020 is estimated to have increased by a record 156 Terawatt-hour (TWh), marking a 23% growth from 2019.
Solar PV, the agency added, accounted for 3.1% of global electricity generation, and it remains the third-largest renewable electricity technology behind hydropower and onshore wind after overtaking bioenergy in 2019.
But the journey to where the world is now with solar energy has been fascinating.
While Tesla Inc. TSLA may have become a household name in the renewable energy space, especially with its electric vehicles (EVs) and Powerwall — which stores electricity for solar self-consumption, General Motors Company GM seems to have done something interesting much earlier.
In 1987, GM grabbed headlines with its GM Sunraycer, which won the first World Solar Challenge. Since then, solar technology and adoption have ballooned, with Tesla now producing solar products, like the solar roof.
Tesla is, however, not the only player in the hardware, software, supply and installation in the solar energy chain.
Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, for example, is an important middleman for solar companies to sell their products. Customers troop Amazon in search of solar products day in and day out.
Interestingly, even tech giant Apple Inc. AAPL has created software ‘connected’ to the sun with their Apple Watch Faces (Solar Dial). This, among several others, is going a long way to show that solar energy is not always related to just panels.
Disrupting The Solar Industry?
Another player that could disrupt the industry is Worksport Ltd. WKSP. The company, through its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, and owns the intellectual property on a variety of tonneau covers, solar integrations, and hydrogen-based true green energy solutions for the sustainable, clean energy, and automotive industries.
Worksport says it seeks to capitalize on the growing shift of consumer mindsets towards clean energy with its proprietary solar and green hydrogen-based technologies.
For some time now, the company reports creating solar covers with battery systems for remote power. The battery systems also help extend the driving range of EV pickup trucks, where before, a benzine motor had to keep running for power.
Worksport recently completed a restructuring exercise which resulted in the launch of its eCommerce online platform and storefronts on Amazon, eBay Inc. EBAY, and Walmart Walmart Inc. WMT Marketplace to get its products to more customers.
This sales expansion could be pivotal, especially when the U.S. has committed to an ambitious goal to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by 50-52% below 2005 levels in 2030.
The country hopes to achieve this by deploying new technologies like electric vehicles and heat pumps and building the infrastructure for key systems like the national power grid. Worksport could be in a unique position to help achieve this.
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