What are some hidden environmental effects of the solar industry?



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    There are a few “hidden” negative effects of the solar energy industry.  One is the manufacture of the panels themselves.  Fossil fuels may be burned in order to produce those panels, which would result in carbon emissions.  If the energy output is greater to make the product than the product itself produces, it has a negative effect.  Luckily, solar technology is finally getting to the place where it is cost effective (in terms of dollars and of energy output for creation of the panels).

    There’s also a slight danger for workers who manufacture and install the panels.  Often, panels are made of materials like arsenic, cadmium, and silicon.  So, workers must protect themselves so they are not exposed to these chemicals.

    Like all large-scale operations, land is needed, and this may affect wildlife populations.  Solar “farms” also require some cooling water, which may put extra strain on water systems.

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