Solar photovoltaic (PV) and electric vehicle (EV)  have been two key engines powering the energy transition to fight climate change.

Solar power is booming.  With a total installation of 400 GW by 2017 - a staggering 30% increase from 2016, PV currently accounts for about 5% of world’s electricity generation capacity. (source: SolarPower Europe and Bloomberg New Energy Finance). 

Electric vehicle (EV) is also booming.  It is expected that by 2040, one in every three cars on the road will be an EV. (source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance)

As the PV and EV markets grow, so will their demand for raw materials, as well as their "waste" output such as decommissioned PV panels and batteries.  How can we make sure that the material aspect of the energy transition will also be sustainable?  How can we avoid creating new environmental challenges while resolving existing ones?

The solutions will clearly require cooperation among many functions in our society, including technology, policy, business and education.  In the arena of business, Product-Service System (PSS) is widely seen as an important family of business models for circular economy.   But how can PSS live up to the high expectations?   How can they deliver real benefits to the environment and to the end-users, while also be financially healthy businesses?

These are the questions CIRCUSOL wants to answer.  Find out what CIRCUSOL plans to do.


(Source:  IRENA/IEA-PVPS, June 2016)