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How Many Solar Panels Are Needed to Power the World?

Power the Earth

In 2009, the Land Art Generator Initiative sponsored a study to determine just how many solar panels would be needed to supply the world energy demand in 2030. They undertook this research as part of their ongoing mission to educate the public about renewable energy of all kinds, including solar and wind energy especially. The results indicated that slightly less than 200,000 square miles of photovoltaic installations would meet the need for energy throughout the Earth. A 2015 recheck of the data revealed that projections for solar electric efficiency and world power demand were still holding true, so that estimate is still believed accurate.

How Much is 200,000 Square Miles?

How much does that amount of land represent? Do we have space for 200,000 square miles of photovoltaic farms? Is there enough usable land that receives sufficient sunlight to accomplish this goal?

Here are some facts about the world that put nearly 200,000 square miles into perspective:

And that last statement is the most telling — the more efficient the photovoltaic cells, the more production we get from every square mile of installed solar panels. That’s why it’s important to use SunPower solar panels, containing the most efficient photovoltaic cells on the market!

The facts are, if the people, governments and corporations of the world were dedicated to the idea of powering our Earth with solar energy, it could be done in a relatively short period of time. The technology exists and all it requires to finish the job is supporting the efforts of companies like SunPower and Solaron to install both rooftop and ground-based systems that meets the needs of residences, commercial buildings and consumers.