Sun and sand
|We take a look at plans to generate Europe's electricity in the Sahara.
What is it?
A plan to use solar power in the Sahara desert to generate vast amounts of clean electricity.
Just 0.3% of the light falling on the Sahara (and other Middle Eastern deserts) could supply all of Europe's electricity needs.
At least, that's what the European Commission's Institute for Energy is saying.
What's to like?
Generating electricity from sunlight is a clean way to generate electricity. And the technology that would drive the Sahara project is already in use in Spain.
Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) works by using mirrors to focus the sun's heat to produce steam, which drives a turbine to generate electricity.
The mirrors have to be a bit bigger than the ones you find in the bathroom - scientists reckon an array the size of Wales might be needed for the plan to work.
The best news is that CSP produces no direct carbon dioxide emissions, so could be a great way of generating juice without making climate change worse.
What's not to like?
The Sahara obviously isn't short of sunlight and so would be an ideal location for CSP, which only works in consistently sunny conditions.
But solar power in its other forms is a real option for meeting our energy needs today.
Many types of solar power work in weak sunlight or overcast conditions.
If you want to know more, see our other articles on green energy.
© Dave Hiebert