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Flagship solar supply chain sustainability Initiative launches public consultation

Solar Energy UK and SolarPower Europe

Immediate release, 17 May 2023

Today, the Solar Stewardship Initiative (SSI) has opened a process for interested organisations to provide feedback on its development.[1]

The SSI was launched in October 2022, by SolarPower Europe and Solar Energy UK, with the goal of securing and demonstrating responsibility, transparency, and sustainability across the solar value chain.[2] The Initiative is working to establish mechanisms that gather and verify information on the environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance of operators in the solar value supply chain. The central instrument is the SSI Code, which sets out the specific ESG criteria that will be monitored by independent auditors.

The initiative currently collaborates with over 60 organisations from across the solar industry and is supported by third-party sustainability experts and the international finance community. It is now calling on actors in the field of ESG to submit their input to the draft SSI Code and the further development of the SSI.

Have your say on the Solar Stewardship Initiative here

Solar Energy UK chief executive Chris Hewett said, “The opening of this consultation marks a critical next stage for the SSI – transitioning from being piloted towards becoming a fully operational system, which will ensure that the European solar industry upholds the right standards, in the right way.”

Walburga Hemetsberger, CEO of SolarPower Europe, said, “We are committed to building the Solar Stewardship Initiative on a foundation of transparency. This public consultation is the next natural step in taking the views of all interested groups across industry, civil society and the ESG community.”

Complementing ongoing exchanges with sustainability experts, the consultation further develops the ways in which interested parties can engage with the initiative.

The SSI is being established as a multi-stakeholder initiative with representatives on its governing bodies from industry at different phases of the value chain, civil society, representatives of affected communities and independent experts on ESG and standard setting.

The consultation is open until 12 July.

Guidance on submitting comments to the consultation is available here.

The SSI will hold dedicated webinars to facilitate further feedback on the Initiative. The first webinar takes place on Wednesday, 24 May 2023 at 15.30 pm CEST, in English.[3]

[1] Consultation

[2] Solar industry unites behind supply chain sustainability initiative

[3] Webinar registration