Specifying EPEAT Panels Sends Signal to Entire Solar Supply Chain to Produce Sustainably-Made, Low-Carbon Products for Developers and Buyers
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Ultra Low-Carbon Solar Alliance is pleased to announce that three members are showing their commitment to building low-carbon, sustainably-made PV products by demonstratring that they meet the rigorous criteria of the EPEAT for Solar ecolabel. The companies pursuing the EPEAT ecolabel include globally recognized module manufacturers as well as new companies driving low-carbon innovations in solar manufacturing.
The Alliance members pursuing EPEAT registration include Qcells, Solarge, and First Solar, which was the first solar manufacturer to have its product included in the launch of the EPEAT Photovoltaic Modules and Inverters category in 2020 and is now working to demonstrate that they meet the new EPEAT carbon footprint criteria as well. Achieving the EPEAT for Solar ecolabel will demonstrate each company’s commitment to sustainable manufacturing as well as low-carbon supply chains and production technologies.
EPEAT is a globally recognized and independently validated ESG and low-carbon standard and ecolabel for solar panels and inverters. Solar developers and corporate buyers are increasingly seeking more reliable supplies of solar panels made with a low-carbon manufacturing footprint and free from connections to forced labor. PV panels bearing the EPEAT ecolabel make it easier for customers to identify low-carbon solar products and confidently partner with solar manufacturers committed to reducing their product’s climate footprint.
“First Solar is proud to have been the first solar manufacturer to register its products in EPEAT and we are committed to meeting the new ultra-low carbon solar criteria. Credible life cycle-based ecolabels like EPEAT make it easier for solar developers, investors, and end-users to identify environmentally leading products from socially responsible companies.”
“Not all solar panels are made the same. At Qcells, we know each solar panel carries its own carbon footprint, which is why we are pursuing this first-of-its-kind low-carbon solar ecolabel. EPEAT will show our customers that we take cutting climate pollution seriously when manufacturing our products. This label will give them peace of mind knowing that when they partner with us, they’re supporting a more sustainable future.”
“Solarge is proud to be one of the first solar manufacturers that will register its products in EPEAT. While Solarge modules have received the highest score in the Dutch National Environmental Database, we strongly believe international standards are required for social responsible products.”
Additional Alliance members are expected to begin the EPEAT registration process next year. These companies represent significant and growing solar panel production capacity and global manufacturing and sales reach. Low-carbon PV panels are enabled in part by supply chain partners prioritizing low-carbon manufacturing, including:
- Polysilicon producers Hemlock Semiconductor (HSC), REC Silicon and Wacker Chemie
- Silicon wafer producers Norsun and Norwegian Crystals
- The low carbon frame and glass producers Origami Solar and CPS Glass
EPEAT-compliant PV panels are expected to be listed in the EPEAT for Solar registry in the second half of 2023, with additional panels being added over time. This registry will make it easy for buyers to find sustainably-manufactured, low-carbon products when planning projects and power purchase agreements (PPAs). The breadth and rigor of the EPEAT for Solar life-cycle based criteria, combined with third-party verification requirements, assures buyers that they can demonstrate their commitment to sustainable supply chains and reduced scope 3 emissions.
Specifying solar panels bearing the EPEAT ecolabel will send a strong market signal to solar manufacturers, motivating them to produce more sustainably-made, low-carbon products up and down the entire solar supply chain. As producing solar materials in a low-carbon grid is an important element of achieving EPEAT’s low carbon footprint requirements, this market signal will also serve to expand PV manufacturing in the U.S. and EU.
To learn more about EPEAT for solar panels and inverters please visit the Alliance website at https://ultralowcarbonsolar.org/epeat-for-solar-ecolabel/, and the Global Electronics Council website at https://globalelectronicscouncil.org/epeat-solar-panels-inverters/.
About the Ultra Low-Carbon Solar Alliance
The Alliance consists of companies across the solar PV value chain committed to expanded market awareness and deployment of ultra low-carbon PV to accelerate reductions in solar supply chain GHG emissions. Learn more at https://ultralowcarbonsolar.org/.