Holland explores future of sustainable energy

Global Business

Recently, the Netherlands unveiled the world’s first solar-powered bike path in an Amsterdam suburb. This revolutionary project has the potential to help the nation further explore the use of sustainable energy in the future. CCTV News’ Zhang He reported this story.

Holland explores future of sustainable energy

Recently, the Netherlands unveiled the world's first solar-powered bike path in an Amsterdam's suburb. This revolutionary project has the potential to help the nation further explore the use of sustainable energy in the future. CCTV News' Zhang He reported this story.

To make cycling greener, an ordinary bike path can turn sunlight into electricity. The 70-meter path stores enough energy to power street lights and even houses.”We have made a road surface that is transparent so the light goes through it and also robust enough to drive over it. So it is safe enough to drive on,” Stan Klerks, lead engineer said.

Power generated by the road will be funneled into the national energy grid. It could help the province of North-Holland achieve the goal of having 14 percent of its energy come from sustainable resources in 2020.

“The Netherlands has 137,000 kilometers of road. When we all have in SolaRoad, it will provide enough energy to have the entire car park of Netherlands drive on electricity. So we have the first energy neutral mobility system in the world,” Paul Rutte, project manager innovations for province of North-Holland said.

If this concept works, the electricity it generates can be used in the electric cars in the future. “There is approximately 50-70 kilowatt hours per square meter output from this type of road, which mean you need 50-70 meter for one household, but if we go on, we can power electric vehicles with this road,” Sten De Wit, spokesman, Solaroad said.

Now, scientists will monitor the bike path for a three-year period and extend it accordingly. If everything goes well, they believe 10 to 20 percent of the Netherlands’ roads could be solarized, creating enough electricity to power two to three million electric vehicles in the future.