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What is Net Zero and What Does It Mean for Solar?

Generating heat and power by burning fossil fuels is a significant cause of the climate crisis, so finding renewable solutions will play an essential role in achieving net-zero. 

This article will discuss everything you need to know about net-zero and how solar panel companies can help governments and businesses achieve their environmental targets.

What is net-zero?

The balance between greenhouse gas emissions and removal from the atmosphere is known as “net-zero”. We achieve net-zero when the amount of emissions we add is no more than the amount we remove. In terms of energy, it means decarbonising traditional fossil-based methods of energy production by switching to renewable energy sources like solar.

Following the conclusion of the COP26 summit in November 2021, governments and organisations around the world have made commitments to reduce their carbon emissions and strive toward net-zero by 2050 or sooner.

Why is net-zero so important?

Setting net-zero targets is one of the most effective ways to fight global warming and reverse the damaging effects of climate change. The UK government has set an ambitious target to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Companies must get onboard and embrace sustainability if the UK is going to become carbon-neutral by this deadline.

In addition to the environmental benefits, switching to sustainable processes can also have a massive impact on your brand reputation and profits. Employees and consumers are becoming more eco-conscious and want to support green companies. Demonstrating your support for net-zero will improve your brand image, increase employee satisfaction, and boost sales.

How can solar help us achieve net-zero?

The production and use of energy is the biggest source of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions and is responsible for 75.6% of emissions globally, according to the World Resources Institute. Finding sustainable alternatives to fossil fuels will play a pivotal role in reducing carbon emissions and paving the way toward a cleaner, more sustainable future.

The energy transition is a pathway that aims to shift the global energy industry from fossil-based systems of energy production to renewable energy sources by 2050. Solar is one of the most popular forms of renewable energy worldwide and its usage has soared in the past 10 years.

Suggested reading: Check out our recent blog post to learn about the history of solar energy.

How does solar power work?

Solar systems use photovoltaic (PV) panels to convert sunlight into electrical energy. This electricity can then be used to power your home or business, or it can be stored in batteries for future use. Sunlight is an abundant and freely available natural energy source, and it has become an increasingly popular alternative to fossil fuels like gas and coal.

Suggested reading: If you want to learn more about how solar panels work, take a look at our guide to Solar PV.

Solar power stats

Check out these interesting solar power stats from The Eco Experts:

  • The global solar capacity was 716.2 GW in 2020
  • The UK's solar capacity is now 14.6 GW
  • Renewable energy contributed to 29% of electricity generation in 2020 - an increase from 27% in 2019
  • Solar power is expected to lead the way in the renewable energy transition and accounted for over half of all renewable energy projects in 2021

What are the benefits of solar?

Lower carbon footprint

One of the main benefits of solar is that it’s a green electricity source that does not produce any greenhouse gas emissions. When you switch to solar, you will reduce your carbon footprint and support the movement towards net-zero.

Cheaper electricity

Solar electricity typically costs the equivalent of around 5-6p/kWh, significantly lower the grid supplied electricity rates in excess of 30p/kWh. Plus, it's fixed which means you won’t be affected by energy price hikes in the future.

Having a fixed, low-cost electricity supply is a massive benefit to businesses, especially when wholesale energy prices have increased 11-fold since 2019.

Bottom line

Global warming is having a devastating impact on our planet and we must all work together to fight climate change. Governments and organisations around the world have pledged to achieve net-zero by 2050 and solar will play a key role in becoming carbon-neutral.

More businesses are installing solar panel systems as a way to reduce carbon emissions, lower electricity costs, and improve brand image. 

Get in touch with the solar experts

Here at Mypower, we are experts in offering energy advice and installing commercial solar panels. If you would like to find out how solar power can help you achieve your net-zero targets, contact our team today!

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