Half of World's Solar Demand to Come From Asia-Pacific Region in 2014
The longtime trend of European countries leading the world in solar energy installations is coming to an end within a year or two, a new report predicts.
Demand will skyrocket in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region next year, accounting for more than 50 percent of all new solar photovoltaic (PV) demand in the world next year, according to NPD Solarbuzz's Asia Pacific PV Markets Quarterly report. APAC countries are expected to install more than 23 gigawatts (GW) of solar PV in 2014, which would set a new record for solar PV installed annually within any region.
That number is larger than Europe's leading 19.2 GW installed in 2011 and more than the entire global PV industry installed in 2010.
“APAC will dominate both manufacturing supply and end-market demand in 2014, with more than 80 percent of module production also coming from the region,” NPD Solarbuzz analyst Steven Han said. “This milestone marks the final chapter in the transition from historic European domination to a new PV industry, where supply and demand from APAC will determine the basis of the 50 GW global PV industry going into 2015.”
The region's rising demand accounts for a 35-percent increase from 2013. More than 85 percent of the new installations will be built in China and Japan. The Chinese Bureau of Energy has announced a 12-GW target for 2014, with eight on rooftops and four on the ground. Japan seeks 20 GW to follow the country’s 230-percent annual growth in 2013, according to the report.
Thailand is the next market in the region set to shine, NPD said. The country’s National Energy Policy committee has proposed 800 megawatts (MW) of community-based solar capacity, with an additional 200 MW to come from solar rooftops. Trina Solar, China's second-largest solar panel provider, agreed last week to supply 25 MW of modules for the Bangchak Solar Energy Project in Thailand.
Thailand is aiming for 1 GW of solar power by the end of next year, and 2 GW by 2021.
Another firm, Mercom Capital Group projects 43 GW to be installed across the world next year.
Visit EcoWatch’s RENEWABLES page for more related news on this topic.
At first glance, you wouldn't think avocados and almonds could harm bees; but a closer look at how these popular crops are produced reveals their potentially detrimental effect on pollinators.
Migratory beekeeping involves trucking millions of bees across the U.S. to pollinate different crops, including avocados and almonds. Timothy Paule II / Pexels / CC0<p>According to <a href="https://www.fromthegrapevine.com/israeli-kitchen/beekeeping-how-to-keep-bees" target="_blank">From the Grapevine</a>, American avocados also fully depend on bees' pollination to produce fruit, so farmers have turned to migratory beekeeping as well to fill the void left by wild populations.</p><p>U.S. farmers have become reliant upon the practice, but migratory beekeeping has been called exploitative and harmful to bees. <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/10/health/avocado-almond-vegan-partner/index.html" target="_blank">CNN</a> reported that commercial beekeeping may injure or kill bees and that transporting them to pollinate crops appears to negatively affect their health and lifespan. Because the honeybees are forced to gather pollen and nectar from a single, monoculture crop — the one they've been brought in to pollinate — they are deprived of their normal diet, which is more diverse and nourishing as it's comprised of a variety of pollens and nectars, Scientific American reported.</p><p>Scientific American added how getting shuttled from crop to crop and field to field across the country boomerangs the bees between feast and famine, especially once the blooms they were brought in to fertilize end.</p><p>Plus, the artificial mass influx of bees guarantees spreading viruses, mites and fungi between the insects as they collide in midair and crawl over each other in their hives, Scientific American reported. According to CNN, some researchers argue that this explains why so many bees die each winter, and even why entire hives suddenly die off in a phenomenon called colony collapse disorder.</p>
Avocado and almond crops depend on bees for proper pollination. FRANK MERIÑO / Pexels / CC0<p>Salazar and other Columbian beekeepers described "scooping up piles of dead bees" year after year since the avocado and citrus booms began, according to Phys.org. Many have opted to salvage what partial colonies survive and move away from agricultural areas.</p><p>The future of pollinators and the crops they help create is uncertain. According to the United Nations, nearly half of insect pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies, risk global extinction, Phys.org reported. Their decline already has cascading consequences for the economy and beyond. Roughly 1.4 billion jobs and three-quarters of all crops around the world depend on bees and other pollinators for free fertilization services worth billions of dollars, Phys.org noted. Losing wild and native bees could <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/wild-bees-crop-shortage-2646849232.html" target="_self">trigger food security issues</a>.</p><p>Salazar, the beekeeper, warned Phys.org, "The bee is a bioindicator. If bees are dying, what other insects beneficial to the environment... are dying?"</p>
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