China-based producer seizes leadership position with comprehensive LCA
SHANGHAI – January 17, 2011– Upsolar, a leading international provider of solar PV modules, today announced the completion of the initial life cycle assessment (LCA) of the production of its two best-selling PV modules, UP-M185M and UPM230P. The company holds the distinction of being one of the first China-based module suppliers to undertake a comprehensive study on the environmental impact of its business.
Completed over the course of 10 months with the technical assistance of Bureau Veritas CODDE (the eco-design center of Bureau Veritas Group), in conjunction withseveral of its main manufacturing platforms, Upsolar's LCA analyzes the environmental impact of the company's modules from the raw materials stage through the fabrication process, installation, operation and end-of-life procedures.
"Environmental studies often fail to consider the full spectrum of environmental impacts, which invariably fall beyond just carbon emissions. As an environmentally conscientious organization, Upsolar also considers a range of factors including organic and inorganic gas emissions, acidification potential and air and water toxicity," said Stephane Dufrenne, CTO for Upsolar. "Just as we strive to optimize our production processes, we strive to optimize environmental performance so it most directly leads to sustainability gains."
Upsolar is currently in the assessment stage after data collection, with a full report expected in early 2012.
"China produces more than 80 percent of the world's silicon-based PV, which leaves the region with considerable environmental questions. As a company manufacturing in China, we hold a responsibility to understand the impacts of our products from the cradle to the grave," said Zhe Jiang, CEO of Upsolar. "We hope this multidimensional analysis will serve as a model for the global industry. In collaboration, we can shape a more environmentally sustainable solar industry. While Upsolar is guided by a sustainability ethic, we also have clear business imperatives for the LCA with strict life cycle assessment standards emerging from governments worldwide. With this LCA, we're ahead of that trend."
Upsolar consistently encourages efforts to improve environmental sustainability.
Most recently, the company provided support to the Responding to Climate Change (RTCC) delegation at the COP17 talks in Durban. Upsolar also serves as a fully compliant member in the PV Cycle, an organization committed to sustainable end-of-life procedures for PV modules. Additionally, the company highlights environmentally focused third-party initiatives through corporate sponsorships, including recent support of a sustainability awareness exhibit at a prominent sustainability institute in Spain.