SMA Solar proves its green credentials

PV inverters from SMA Solar can now claim to be manufactured in a zero carbon, scope 2, European manufacturing facility following an independent audit.

The UK company of SMA Solar Technology AG recently appointed independent verifier CICS to assess the carbon footprint of the company’s manufacturing facility in Germany.

The audit has concluded that the factory produces zero carbon emissions due to a combination of renewable energy and energy efficiency technology.

The independent audit has verified and certified the factory to the ISO 14064-1:2006 standard covering the scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions. It means the Solar Works 1 factory in Kassel is the world’s largest zero carbon solar PV inverter manufacturing facility to this scope and boundary.

Jan van Laethem, general manager SMA Solar UK, said: “SMA’s inverter technology already makes a significant contribution to the global effort to reduce carbon emissions and tackle climate change. Our inverters are at the heart of solar PV systems around the world which produce clean renewable energy for householders and businesses.

“Now with news that our manufacturing facility in Germany has been officially declared zero scope 2 carbon we can safely say our products are manufactured in a verified facility.”

Jan added: “We believe it’s not enough for solar PV systems to simply produce zero carbon energy. Manufacturers of all PV system components need to go one step further and demonstrate their commitment to lowering CO2 emissions during the manufacturing process as well.

“At SMA we have demonstrated that it is possible to manufacture solar PV technology without negatively impacting on the environment. This is crucial if the solar industry is to convince its customers of the green credentials of its products.”

The Solar Works 1 factory took 18 months to build and was opened in 2009. At full capacity, around 4,000 units can be produced every day in the 18,000 m2 facility at Solar Works 1. The factory features an onsite 1 GW solar PV system. A combined heat and power plant produces carbon-neutral power and heat from, amongst others, biogas from two regional plants. Heating is also drawn from a nearby renewable waste incineration plant. Additional renewable energy is bought to cover the complete power consumption.