We are delighted to announce that Mariana Cover (pictured) has been awarded a three month placement opportunity with Better Solar supporting the development of an international network working to support social and environmental justice across global solar supply chains. The placement is funded by the LCEDN and is based at the University of Edinburgh. Mariana joins the placement having recently completed an MSc in Environment and Development at the University of Edinburgh. Mariana started the placement on 28 January. Mariana has written the following blog in anticipation of the start of the placement:
I am Mariana Cover, a biologist from Venezuela passionate for working towards making this world a more just and equal place. Access to energy, clean energy, is one of the topics that move me the most. Yet, energy, any source/type of it, has challenges and limitations that we should be talking about and must be resolved. These are not an exception for renewable technologies such as solar, which is expected to achieve ambitious social and environmental goals in the near future. However, nowadays, these goals are not necessarily being achieved, with intensive mining activities for the manufacturing process, incorrect final disposal of the technologies, and even violation of workers’ rights, all of these present in the different stages of the solar supply chains.
These challenges and limitations were, then, my main motivations to apply for the placement with the LCEDN at the University of Edinburgh, where I will have the opportunity to work for fairer and more sustainable solar industry across the world. I am looking forward to interacting and working with the several organisations and academics that are working on the topic, as well as to bring them together in an international gathering to discuss these solar energy limitations and possible ways to address them. I am very excited to be part of this interesting and challenging project, to have the opportunity to work with organisations and academics in the field, to put into practice the communications and project coordination skills I have developed through my career, and to learn more about the current solar reality, its limitations and its opportunities.