Renewable Energy Benefits: Leveraging Local Capacity for Solar Water Heaters

July 2021
ISBN : 978-92-9260-343-4

Heating and cooling account for nearly half of global final energy consumption. As renewables increasingly become cost-competitive, solar alternatives especially for heating water are becoming more common. Solar thermal systems for water heating, or solar water heaters, are a mature technology that has been successfully deployed in several countries for more than 30 years.

The deployment of solar water heaters is particularly needed in countries that rely on fossil fuel imports to cover their heating needs, or where the use of electric boilers and heat pumps may strain the electricity system or be unaffordable to many households.

This report from IRENA aims to expand policy makers’ understanding of the steps needed to develop a local market for solar water heaters, and the existing capabilities that can be leveraged to do so. This report highlights opportunities to create local value by setting up a domestic industry around solar water heaters.

Renewable energy development can drive economic growth, create new jobs and enhance human health and welfare at the national level. The Leveraging Local Capacity series examines the kinds of jobs created and suggests ways to build on existing industries.

Each study outlines the requirements along the whole value chain, particularly in terms of the human resources and skills needed to produce, install and operate plants or facilities based on a specified renewable energy technology. This involves assessing the materials and equipment needed in each segment, with a focus on identifying potential for local value creation.

Leveraging studies have been released for offshore wind, onshore wind and solar photovoltaic.