Making Solar PV Production in China More Environmentally Friendly

solar PV manufacturing
Image courtesy of Yingli Green Energy.

The Clean Production Evaluation Index System for PV Cells (the System) was recently officially released by the Chinese govenment. The System was jointly developed by China National Institute of Standardization (CNIS),  World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and Yingli Green Energy leading Chinese solar PV companies. The establishment of the System was one of the commitments made by Yingli, as the first Chinese company and the first solar PV manufacturer, when joining the WWF Climate Savers Program in 2013.

CNIS,  WWF and the leading solar PV companies, in order to promote clean production in China’s PV industry, began developing the System in September 2013. Based on the extensive experience in clean production technology and of tier one solar PV companies, the participants researched and reviewed current practices, and finalized the System design in June 2016.

As the first evaluation system of China’s solar PV industry, the System establishes comprehensive evaluation indexes on the production of solar PV cells including the production process, equipment used, energy consumption, comprehensive utilization of resources, pollution emissions, product features, and clean production management. The System is a significant step forward for the promotion of clean production amongst China’s solar PV cell manufacturers and will support improved energy conservation, pollution prevention, sustainable development, and lead to a more environmentally friendly Chinese solar PV industry.

“Technical standards are one of the most important measures to promote supply-side structural reform, optimize industrial restructuring, and enhance the capability of independent innovation,” said, Mr. Wang Bohua, Secretary General of China Photovoltaic Industry Association. “The establishment of the System could help China’s solar PV cell manufactures to promote cleaner production, improve energy conservation and reductions in emissions. The System is crucial for the sustainable development of China’s solar PV cell production and the construction of an environmentally friendly society.”

“The official release of this evaluation index system is a very good example to demonstrate how business can drive changes for the solar PV industry to be greener,” said Ms. Chen Xin, Co-Acting Director of Climate & Energy Program of WWF China. “As one of the goals of the Climate Savers Program, WWF is committed to promoting more industrial leaders to participate in climate and energy issues to positively influence the markets, industries, and policies through their technical expertise and innovation.”

“The establishment of the System is essential for the Chinese solar PV industry to transition into a greener economy and be stronger,” said Mr. Gao Dongfeng, Director of the Branch of Resource and Environment of CNIS. “We hope that China’s solar PV industry could take this opportunity to accelerate technical innovation in order to strengthen itself and lead the advancement of clean production worldwide.”

“The System has set up a series of world leading indicators for the production of solar PV cells. Once achieved, it can help China’s solar PV cell manufacturers reduce their energy consumption by approximately 20%, cut the emissions of nitrogen oxide and chemical oxygen demand both by 14%, which leads to a significant reduction of solar PV panel’s energy recovery period from 1.17 year to 1 year or nearly 15%,” said Mr. Song Dengyuan, Chief Technology Officer of Yingli. “It will make the solar PV industry greener and promote the concept of clean production throughout the industry.”

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This post was prepared by Solar Thermal Magazine staff.

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