The search for a substitute for fossil energy sources, the world wide improving environmental awareness and the needs of the growing population in developing countries have increased the interest in photovoltaics (PV) as a long term available, environmentally friendly and reliable energy technology. This leads to the search for new developments with respect to material use and consumption, device design and production technologies. If PV is to be implemented as one of the major sources of world energy supply, the question about the environmental impact of this technology has to be answered satisfactorily.
The suitability of PV as a sustainable and environmentally benign source of energy has to be proven and therefore, the total lifecycle of PV-systems has to be analysed including where and how the systems are used. To initiate a fruitful and truly international discussion on these topics, two conferences will be held in 2003 and 2004, respectively.
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