The realization that solar energy is far superior and applicable than we might have ever thought, has led many to ask the very simple question; why is solar energy good? The answer to this is multi-fold, with a growing list of solar applications and advancements, and ultimately this is the question we are attempting to answer through this article. Whether your priorities are energy efficiency, ‘going green’, or decreasing your energy bills, there is undoubtedly a solar option out there for you.
Find Out Why Solar Energy Is Good…
Increase Affordability and Sustainability
Equipping your home with a solar energy system can help pay for major or minor home improvement projects or can help to make your energy bills more sustainable; many pool owners pay about $500 more per year for electricity and will purchase a solar system to ease this burden. An investment in solar will pay for itself and make the overall investment more manageable.
Remember, there aren’t many home improvements that cost less than a solar system or receive government tax credits, let alone saving on your home’s monthly costs. An investment in solar energy is worth its money more so than almost any other improvement you can make to your home.
- Earn a Great Return on Your Investment: Solar panels shouldn’t be viewed as an expense – in fact, they are one of the wisest investments you can make, with returns rivalling more-traditional investments. Thanks largely to the substantial monthly energy cost savings, the average American will pay off their solar panel system within 7 or 8 years, with an average return on investment (ROI) of 20 percent or more!
- Protect Against Rising Energy Costs: One of the major benefits from solar energy comes from its effect on your utility prices, protecting you against the 3% average annual increase in US residential energy bills in the last decade. By investing in solar energy now, you can protect yourself against the unpredictable increases in normal utility costs. If you own a home or business and have a fluctuating cash flow, solar energy is particularly attractive as it will help you better forecast and manage your expenses.
- Increase Your Property Value: Multiple studies have found that homes equipped with solar energy systems have higher property values and sell quicker than non-solar homes. Indeed, appraisers are increasingly considering solar installations in their assessment of a home’s value and homebuyers are increasingly aware of the benefits of, and demand for, solar panel systems. Put together, the benefits to you from solar energy will only continue to increase in the coming years.
Save money and Go Green
Unlike traditional power sources, solar power produces no harmful emissions. From the clean, renewable absorption of the sun’s energy to the production of the PV cells and CPV cells (the main component in solar panels) which has an estimated Energy Pay-Back Time (EPBT) of 0.5 to 1.4 years, there is virtually no cleaner or more-renewable form of energy. Nonetheless, 68% of the US’s electricity is produced by fossil fuels, which produce harmful emissions including:
- Carbon Dioxide (CO2) – one of the leading greenhouse gas contributors to global warming
- Carbon Monoxide (CO) – a major byproduct of fossil fuel consumption, particularly in automobiles
- Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) – causes acid rain, which harms plants and aquatic animals, as well as humans through respiratory or heart illnesses
- Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) – contribute to ground-level ozone, which irritates and damages lungs
- Particulate Matter (PM) – causes haze over cities and scenic areas and, coupled with Ozone, contributes to asthma and chronic bronchitis
- Mercury and Other Heavy Metals – dangerous and hazardous to human and animal health
Impressive Lasting Power
Solar panels have no moving parts, and so are not easily damaged or worn down. This lowers the chances of an interruption of service and ensures that you get the maximum benefit from your system. Every solar panel is tested to ensure they can withstand high winds and extreme weather conditions such as hail, sleet, or heavy snowfall. Skilled installers will often guarantee the quality and strength of your panels and include a 30-year warranty.
- The most abundant power source: The future is bright for natural solar energy. Earth’s surface receives 120,000 terawatts of solar radiation from sunlight – that is 20,000 times more energy than would be required to supply the entire world with power!
- The rise of shared solar: Due to shade, space limitations, or ownership issues, 1 in 5 American homes is unfit for solar panels. With the introduction of shared solar systems, homeowners can subscribe to a ‘community solar garden’, which will generate solar electricity for those involved without the installation of individual solar systems.
- Mechanical Advantages: If we think about some other technologies, even green technologies, there is a tendency for some sort of moving part that can fail; wind turbines provide an excellent example of this. Solar panels are different. With no moving parts and absolutely no noise produced by photovoltaics, solar panels are far more silent and less-intrusive than some of the alternatives.
- Technology is Improving: Technological advancements are constantly being made in the solar power industry. Innovation in this sector as well as in nanotechnology and quantum physics has the potential to triple solar panels’ output over their current levels.
Solar is the Way of the Future
In 2016, the majority of energy added to the US power grid was made up of renewable technologies, with thousands of jobs and high growth associated with such emerging industries. Every indication is that this pattern will continue, with 93% of the total utility-scale generating capacity added to the grid accounted for by solar, wind, and natural gas. This puts the US up to 4th in solar PV usage, still lagging behind China, Germany, and Japan, and shows that solar is the way of the future.
- Solar Power Uses Underutilized Land: With the increasing demand for solar energy, its accessibility has likewise increased. Many countries, especially developing countries, have undeveloped rural land that is virtually unused and can be used to generate vast energy at a great value. Through such strategies, the logistics of solar panels are no longer limited to spaces more suitably occupied by other things and can aid in global development efforts.
- Solar Power Creates Jobs and Economic Growth: Most of the money put into solar power pays for salaries and the development, maintenance, and installation of these systems. As the technology improves and expands, thousands of jobs will be created and this industry can drive a new period of industrial growth.
In all, thus, there is an undoubted role to be played in the future of energy production by solar panels and the continued emergence of improved solar technologies. By providing boundless energy while generating significant savings on your monthly energy bill, there is no doubting the suitability and attractiveness of solar panel systems. While there are undoubtedly benefits to come from other emerging renewable energies, the efficiency, effectiveness, and accessibility of solar panels makes this technology stand out in this sector.
Any homeowner interested in lowering their monthly bills, increasing their efficiency, or doing their part to reduce emissions should seriously consider solar energy, even if on a small scale.
Unsure about solar technology, probably a better idea to start on a smaller scale, try solar flood lights. As this article has laid out, now is the time to get in on the solar movement and start benefiting from the diverse applications in which this technology can make your life easier, more efficient, and cheaper.