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Eliminating the need for fossil fuels with sunrays

Stumbling through documents regarding “feed-in tariffs” and solar legislation, I stumbled upon this incredible graphic. Those 6 little black dots represent the square land area required to completely satiate the entire world’s energy demands using photovoltaic cells. If it weren’t for big oil, lobbyists, corrupt leadership, and old money, I’d ask why we can’t just plop down our dot’s worth of these solar cells in southern Utah.

Direct explanation of the above figure from WikiCommons:

“Solar power systems installed in the areas defined by the dark disks could provide more than the world’s 2006 total primary energy demand (assuming a conversion efficiency of 8%). That is, all energy currently consumed, including heat, electricity, fossil fuels, etc., would be produced in the form of electricity by solar cells. The colors in the map show the local solar irradiance averaged over three years from 1991 to 1993 (24 hours a day) taking into account the cloud coverage available from weather satellites.”

Last modified: October 4, 2007

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