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Cycling is popular in the Netherlands [image credit: expatica.com]

There’s a reason why fixed solar panels should be, and usually are, angled at about 35-40 degrees in northern Europe. It’s called the optimal tilt angle. This cycle path with panels flat on the ground is so simple-minded it’s embarrassing, or ought to be.
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Authorities in a central Dutch province opened what they are billing as the world’s longest solar bicycle path Wednesday, mixing sustainable energy with emission-free travel, says TechXplore.

Students from a local elementary school were the first to ride along the 330-meter-long (360-yard) path located in the village of Maartensdijk, near Utrecht.

It is made up of blocks of prefabricated concrete topped with a thin transparent layer that protects and allows sunlight to hit solar cells encased in the blocks.

The pilot project is aimed at establishing if such dual-use roads can be more widely used to create solar energy and serve cyclists as the province of Utrecht seeks to slash its carbon emissions.

“It’s very important. We want to be climate-neutral in 2040, and then you have to dare to use innovation, and this is very innovative,” Arne Schaddelee, a provincial official, said.

“We have a very full province with not much room, and for that reason you have to try dual use. So if you can use roads to generate energy, you have a double advantage.”

The solar cycle path was launched on the day the European Union unveiled sweeping new legislation to help meet its pledge to cut emissions of the gases that cause global warming [Talkshop comment – evidence-free assertion] by 55% over this decade, including a controversial plan to tax foreign companies for the pollution they cause.

Solar bike lanes are already in use elsewhere in the Netherlands.

Full article here.

via Tallbloke’s Talkshop

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July 14, 2021