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One fairly constant criticism of solar energy not being able to provide significant chunks of power for everyday life is that the amount of space and scale needed for installations that can meet those needs are staggeringly huge. For solar energy to make significant contributions to the electric grid, a whole lot of space must be devoted for power plants and solar farms.
For example, solar installations in the Mojave Desert, which receives about twice the sunlight compared with the rest of the U.S., can spread over five to 10 miles. Often, the high levels of sunlight craved by solar farms are found in the desert, but the drawback of locating huge solar installations in the desert is that not a lot of people live all that close to deserts, meaning additional infrastructure is needed to transport the electricity to population centers far away.
This gave Netherlands-based energy industry consultancy and certification firm DNV KEMA some inspiration. Read more