Donald Trump who has spent years criticizing renewable energy as uneconomical and who has pulled the US out of the Paris climate agreement has now floated the idea of adding solar panels to his proposed barrier along the the US–Mexico border.
Trump believe that these panel will convert the wall into a “Beautiful Structure” , according to congressional insider who talked about the meeting that trump had with Republican leaders. The wall is 3,200 kilometer (1,988 miles) border separating Mexico and America.
Trump cited the wall’s economic benefits as well as its environmental ones. Thomas Gleason, managing partner of Gleason Partners LLC, the company that proposed the design, told Business Insider that each solar panel on the wall would produce 2.0MWp per hour of electricity, and, because of this, the wall would pay off the cost of its construction in 20 years through the energy it sells.
“Putting solar panels on the wall would amount to mere decoration with no substantive contribution to its basic obnoxious function – a barrier separating one group of people from another,” said Langdon Winner, political theorist, philosopher of technology and author of Do Artifacts Have Politics?
Meanwhile, Nezar AlSayyad, a UC Berkeley professor of architecture and planning, told The Guardian that the wall was still “indefensible” and that “trying to embellish it with a technical function or a new utility … is a folly.” Political theorist Langdon Winner was even more outspoken in his criticism: “I’m wondering what the solar electricity would be used for? Electrocuting people who try to climb the wall?”