The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) recently announced it released a new tool called the Solar Supply Chain Traceability Protocol, designed to increase supply chain transparency and help ensure that all solar components are made ethically throughout the solar value chain. It consists of a set of guidelines designed to help solar companies meet compliance obligations and, importantly, provide customers with assurances that their solar products are free of unethical labor practices.
“Solar customers expect their products to be ethically-produced, and this protocol helps ensure that solar products coming into the United States are not made using forced labor,” said John Smirnow, SEIA’s vice president of market strategy, in the press release. “Solar is one of the cleanest and most reliable technologies on our grid today, and we hope this tool will give American buyers and leaders confidence at a time when solar energy increasingly supports our need to fuel economic growth and tackle the climate crisis.”
As manufacturers begin using the traceability protocol, it will be regularly reviewed and updated to improve its usability and effectiveness. It is important to point out that the protocol by itself will not stamp out forced labor, companies need to go through the steps laid out by the protocol.
SEIA also released the Solar Buyers' Guide on Traceability, which summarizes the protocol and offers key questions that customers, developers, financiers and other stakeholders should ask suppliers about products in the solar plus storage value chain.
For more information on this new protocol, read the original release from SEIA.