Scientists in Brookhaven national laboratory US systematically studied the heavy metal emissions from renewable energy, such as crystalline silicon solar cell, CdTe thin film solar cell, and traditional energy, such as coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy. In the analysis of solar cell, the full life-cycle process was considered including the original processing of ores required for the solar cell materials, the production
and use of solar cells, etc.. The study results show that the highest cadmium emission is oil which achieves 44.3g/GWh, the second highest is coal about 3.7g/GWh. The cadmium emission of CdTe thin film solar module is only 0.3g/GWh as same as natural gas.
In the summary, with the lowest cost of power generation, the ASP CdTe thin film solar module can help the world to achieve the revolution of clean energy and harvests of both economic and environmental benefits.