Tesla Holland solar roofing plant. Image: Aerovista Luchtfotografie Shutterstock

Publication of Elon Musk’s environmental impact report: the 3.5 GW of photovoltaic modules installed produced 13.25 TWh of electricity against 5.26 TWh consumed by its 3 models of electric cars.

Over half a million Tesla cars sold, which equates to 4 million cubic meters less CO2 in the atmosphere.

Tesla’s photovoltaic power plants produce more than twice as much energy from renewable sources as their electric cars consume: the first “Environmental Impact Report” of the company founded by Elon Musk reports this surprising figure.

In February 2019, the photovoltaic power installed in Tesla systems was 3.5 GW for a total power generated of 13.25 TWh, more than double the 5.26 TWh consumed when recharging the three flagship cars of the company American models, the Model S, X and Tesla Model 3, recently launched on the market.

The American company estimates that over the average lifespan of 35 years of the installed systems, the photovoltaic panels will generate 86.5 TWh of green electricity, equivalent to the consumption of at least 10 years in the city of Washington. DC or semi-annual consumption across Australia.

The impact on emissions is also significant: the 550,000 cars Tesla sells are said to have driven more than 10 billion miles, which is equivalent to more than 4 million cubic meters less CO2 released into the atmosphere.

The report describes the achievements of vehicle production, but mainly focuses on the charging network developed by Tesla, which today is said to have provided nearly 600 GWh of electricity, or more than 75 million gallons of gasoline. .

Investing in the grid, in fact, is particularly useful in the event of natural disasters, as in the case of Hurricane Maria which hit Puerto Rico in September 2017, where Tesla built a storage system combined with photovoltaic systems capable of ” supply 660 sites around the world. the Island.

Or to secure power in areas affected by periodic blackouts, such as South Australia, where Tesla built the world’s largest lithium-ion battery– A 100/129 MWh system connected to the neighboring Neoen Hornsdale wind farm, built in just 100 days. A storage facility that exceeded all expectations, with record profitability.

Particularly interesting solutions for isolated communities that do not have continuous access to the electricity grid, such as the island of Ta’u, in American Samoa, where the company Elon Musk has installed 5,300 photovoltaic modules connected to 60 storage systems . A network that allows the inhabitants of the island to use 100% renewable energy even for 3 consecutive days of bad weather and lack of sun, saving about 110,000 gallons of diesel per year.

There is still work to be done. The report admits that Tesla’s production is not zero emissions: between production, charging network and energy consumption, Tesla emits 282 thousand tonnes of CO2 per year. A figure that the company also intends to decrease thanks to the creation of the first Gigafactory in China, which will be equipped with a solar roof of 200,000 photovoltaic modules.

Tesla has announced plans to reduce the use of cobalt, which is often mined in underdeveloped parts of the world with little environmental and social control, with the goal of eliminating it completely in the near future.

More information: tesla.com