Check Out the World’s First Solar Panel Bike Path

As one of the biking capitals of the world, Amsterdam can already make a case for being a leader in the green movement. The city is not resting on its laurels, however. Now, biking around the city is getting even greener than just being car-free: a bike path in the suburbs of Amsterdam is getting a major solar makeover.

The trail, which connects the small communities of Wormerveer and Krommenie, is the preferred route of approximately 2,000 local bicycle commuters each day. Local authorities have opted to replace 230 feet of asphalt with solar panels to generate plenty of renewable energy. By 2016, the planners anticipate generating enough power to sustain three homes.

Though cycling will inevitably attract dirt to the solar surface thereby blocking some of the sunlight, they are designed to be self-cleaning. Tilted ever so slightly, the panels should allow rainwater to wash the dirt off the path.

Because the path was originally laid out without considering the optimal positioning to have the most access to sunlight, the panels will only be able to produce about 70 percent of the energy that solar panels on typical roofs can create. That said, the government hopes to continue expanding the solar capacities on the trail to make it more effective.

If the plan sounds vaguely familiar, perhaps you’ve read about Solar Roadways, a project originated by Scott and Julie Brusaw. They’ve been busy advocating to turn roads and parking lots into solar panels. They claim that if all of the roads in the U.S. were switched to solar panels, the country would be able to reduce its carbon emissions by 75 percent.

Despite being encased in glass that can withstand the weight of dropped steel balls, critics worry that the surface won’t survive the longterm wear and tear. Theoretically, the path should work out, but it remains theoretical until it proves practice. Thank goodness that the Netherlands is willing to foot the nearly $4 million bill on this ambitious project to test its feasibility.

The Netherlands has been making a lot of admirable green choices lately. The country recently joined other nations around the world in banning Monsanto and its devastating RoundUp pesticide from being sprayed on its crops. Additionally, despite being one of the world leaders in fur production and generating millions of dollars for the economy, the Netherlands voted to stop mink fur farming.

65 comments

Chris G.
.2 years ago

Your contents are too straightforward to browse and easy to understand.
0% interest

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Charlie M.
Charlie M.2 years ago

This is so inspiring! Talk about a MAJOR solar power make over!
"Hey World! Look out! Solar is coming in HOT!"

I am so excited to share this with my friends at www.solarpiper.com!
We are passionate about Solar Power and clean energies technologies, and are excited to share our knowledge. We want to educate the world on Residential Solar Power, and prove how self-sustaining, affordable, and rewarding it is.

We even created a calculator to assist in making decisions about how to add solar power to your property. It can be used to find out how much solar energy can be collected on your property, what your needs and requirements are, grid-tied or off-grid, and how much it will cost you. You can find it www.solarpiper.com

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Betty Kelly
Betty Kelly3 years ago

Go Netherlands ! All Governments should set up a Solar/Wind green energy program.

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Cynthia no frwd B.
cynthia l3 years ago

yeah for solar

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Katie D.
Katie & Bill D3 years ago

Looks very well constructed, would melt the ice off too.
thank you

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Grace Adams
Grace Adams3 years ago

Good for the Netherlands. Live long and prosper.

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Warren Webber
Warren Webber3 years ago

Live long and prosper

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Angela P.
Angie P3 years ago

Expensive project at $4 million to generating enough power to sustain three homes. Sounds like a great idea and hope it works. The pricetag needs to come down a bit though.

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Lorraine Andersen

great idea. thanks

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Jonathan Harper
Jonathan Harper3 years ago

noted

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