Fly over “Datong County”, a region in northern China, and you’ll see two giant pandas. One is waving at you. They are made of thousands of solar panels.
Together, and with the other adjacent panels included, they form a 100-megawatt farm covering 248 acres. It’s actually a relatively small solar park by China’s standards – but it is certainly patriotic.
China has more solar energy capacity than any other country in the world, at a gargantuan 130 gigawatts. If it were all generating electricity at once, it could power the whole of the UK several times over. China is home to many sizeable solar farms – including the huge 850-megawatt Longyangxia Dam facility on the Tibetan Plateau, with its four million panels. And the largest solar plant in the world at the moment is in China’s Tengger Desert – its capacity exceeds 1,500 megawatts.