France car parks and PV
Credit: Frame Harirak on unsplash

France car parks and PV

France wants all of its larger carparks, new and existing, to have rooftop solar. If we take the plan a bit further, we could see the potential to power local residential building cooling and EV charging.

Summary: France wants all of its larger carparks, new and existing, to have rooftop solar. The plan, which targets large parking areas around commercial centers and train stations, could generate up to 11 gigawatts, equal to 10 nuclear plants.

Why this is important: Much of the new renewable generation will be utility scale but planning delays and grid connection are still challenges to be overcome. Alternative approaches include small scale roof top solar and mid-scale district-based systems. For these, the ability to easily connect to the grid, or even better generate electricity that can be used locally, will help to accelerate rollout.

The big theme: By some calculations, we need to expand wind and solar installed capacity by between 5x and 15x in short order if countries net zero targets are to be met. This is a rate c. 3-4x faster than we are currently achieving. In many scenarios, solar will be the cheapest renewable source of supply, and as a result we are seeing increasing measures to encourage its more rapid build out.



The details


Summary of a story from electrek

France wants all of its larger carparks, new and existing, to have rooftop solar. New legislation, recently approved through the Senate will require all parking lots with spaces for at least 80 vehicles to be covered by solar panels. Large carparks, so over 400 spaces, will have to comply with the measures by July 2026. Smaller carparks - between 80 & 400 spaces, have been given an extra two years. HGV carparks, and those in historic or protected areas are excluded.

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