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Abstract

Floating photovoltaics is a emerging approach to deploy photovoltaics on water bodies. Thanks to its high overall global potential and the extensive experience gained (with more than 2 GWp installed and than 510 plants, up to 2020), it represents a promising venue for expanding renewable electricity production worldwide. However, a local assessment for sustainability is needed for this potential to be converted into specific projects attracting the attention of stakeholders. This paper provides an original and wide-ranging screening checklist that allows for site assessment, with a view of separating suitable from unsuitable sites and emphasising that appropriate design can solve difficulties linked to the site features. It offers an extensive list of activities that international, national and regional authorities, investors, solution providers, local communities and civic society, environmentalists and other stakeholders might undertake for a fruitful dialogue. It explores the possibility that art, architecture and industrial design may play a role in increasing the touristic value and the public acceptance of new plants. Although the checklist can be used in other conditions, a particular attention is paid to mountain artificial lakes used as reservoirs by hydro-power plants, since they have potential high synergies (and a global potential of over 3.0 TW) but also may encounter significant implementation issues.

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