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Renault bets big on solar power

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The good folk at Renault, purveyors of quirky French automobiles and such, have decided to invest heavily in solar power for their production and distribution operations. How big? Well they’ve just announced an initial 40 hectare commitment, which is the equivalent of 60 football pitches. The solar installations, all located in La Belle France, will produce 52,600 MWh of power every year, enough for a town of 15,000 people.

Rather cleverly, the solar panels are designed to double up as vehicle sheds, to protect newly produced cars from weather damage, particularly hailstorms, which clearly is a problem for brand new paintwork. When you factor in the large PR value in announcing to the world how green you are (let’s forget for a moment what muck their products emit on a daily basis) then this is clearly a big win. And you can bet there’s a massive chunk of French government money tied in with the deal somewhere in the background, can’t you?

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To be fair though, we’re starting to appreciate some of the newer products to come out of their factories, like this Twizzy electric runabout, which we featured earlier this year, and the company is planning on doubling their solar investment internationally over the coming months, in countries such as Morocco, Brazil and Romania. So we’re hoping this is a trend and not just a stunt. For now it’s definitely a thumbs up for effort.

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Nigel is the managing editor of the Red Ferret, as well as a freelance columnist for the Sunday Times newspaper in London. Loves tech and fancies himself as a bit of a futurist, but then don’t we all?

Nigel – who has written posts on The Red Ferret Journal.


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