A photovoltaic ecosystem: improving atmospheric environment and fighting regional poverty

Yishu Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The world is facing two great challenges. One is the deterioration of the atmospheric environment caused by air pollution and climate change. The other is the regional poverty. This paper analyses how China deals with these two challenges with a large-scale extension of photovoltaics (PV), and reveals that a photovoltaic ecosystem (PVE) plays the most essential role in PV extension. PV power is one of the most promising clean energy without emissions of pollutants or CO2, but its wide application encountered practical difficulties. The PVE can simplify owners’ responsibilities along with improving project plan and operation to overcome the difficulties. It led China to the largest PV power producer and it keeps improving the atmospheric environment. China's PVE also provided an effective means to alleviate the regional poverty. It takes advantages of sunlight and land resources in poor areas to produce wealth. Millions of people have been lifted out of poverty since 2015 by PVE. This innovative PVE inspires the world. If it can be extended to other countries, it will make significant contribution to the improvement of atmospheric environment and the reduction of poverty.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-79
Number of pages11
JournalTechnological Forecasting and Social Change
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Air pollution
  • China
  • Climate problem
  • PV ecosystem
  • Regional poverty


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