Stay current: the week’s best solar links

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We’ve rounded up our top reads of the week about solar and the future of the energy — so you can stay current.

-Happy Earth Day – it’s a historic one: more than 130 countries have committed to sign the Paris Climate Agreement today, which was finalized during December’s international summit. That would set a record for most signatures on the opening-day signing of an international agreement, held previously by a UN maritime treaty in 1982 (United Nations Blog).

-San Francisco has become the first major US city to require that new buildings install rooftop solar. The Better Roofs Ordinance is expected in the near future to add 50,000 solar panels and avoid 26.3 million tons of carbon dioxide annually (Quartz / Michael Coren).

-More than 565,000 electric vehicles were sold globally in 2015 – a roughly 80% increase over 2014. China is now the largest market for plug-in vehicle sales, followed by Western Europe and the US. (Green Car Reports via CS Monitor / Stephen Edelstein).

-The pioneering solar-powered aircraft, Solar Impulse 2, has lifted off once again. Having flown 8,900 kilometers last summer from Japan to Hawaii, the plane is now midair en route to North America. The craft, whose wingspan is bigger than a 747’s, is fueled by 17,000 solar cells and four lithium-ion batteries that use stored solar power by night. (CNN / David Molko)

Out with the coal, in with the solar. Earlier this month in the UK, solar power for the first time provided more electricity than coal across a full day. (Carbon Brief / Simon Evans) 

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