Benefits of Solar Power -- by Patricia Laddich

Many people opt for solar power for different reasons, but cutting energy costs and improving the environment are the most common. Regardless of your motivation for going solar, this article discusses some of the enumerable benefits of solar power and the reason for their popularity in the United States.
Solar power is a renewable resource that can be utilized over and over again without depletion. The sun provides us with an endless supply of energy that is more than enough to power the world if harnessed. You can expect renewable energy sources to account for more than half of the development in energy supply globally over the next two decades. In fact it is practical to suggest that the world is entering an era of cheap, clean, and unlimited power.
Environmental Benefits & Impact of Solar Powered Solutions
A report given by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), revealed that in 2008 world energy-related carbon dioxide emissions equaled 30.2 billion metrics tons. This value is expected to increase to more than 35.2 billion metric tons in 2020 and even further to 43.2 billion metric ton in 2035. Solar powered systems on the other hand produce no C02 emissions and they considerably decrease the electricity drawn from natural gas and coal. Take a look at the carbon dioxide emissions of coal and natural gas comparing these non-renewable energy sources to solar:
  • Coal ranges from 800 to 1250 grams of CO2 per kilowatt hour.
  • Natural Gas: Usually ranges from 360 to 575 grams of CO2 per kilowatt hour
  • Solar (Photovoltaic): Solar power can range someplace between 43 to 73 grams of C02 per kilowatt hour
These stats clearly shows that natural gas contributes more than seven times the amount of CO2 emissions in relation to solar energy, while coal contributes more than 16 times the amount of CO2 emissions in relation to solar energy. Evidently, the benefit of using solar energy far outweighs fossil fuel use. Fossil fuel when burned releases harmful gases that are the main cause of pollution (air and water) and global warming, which is harmful to human health. In fact it has been linked to heart attacks, cancer, breathing complications and neurological damage. Substituting fossil fuels with renewable energy sources such as solar power can reduce overall health care cost as well as premature mortality. In addition to causing environmental problems, fossil fuels are a finite resource. This limited availability results in a volatile market in which energy prices can hit the roof within a short period of time.
Protection against rising Energy Costs
One of the foremost benefits of solar powered panels is the capacity to hedge utility prices. In the last decade, the prices of residential electricity have gone up by an average of 3% yearly. You can cut down on your utility bill by investing in a solar energy system and protect against irregular increases in electricity costs. Whether you’re a homeowner or businessman, investing in a solar system will help you to better project and manage your expenses. The energy from the sun is nearly infinite and a vital component of attaining energy independence in the US. By increasing our ability to generate electricity from the sun, we can also protect our country from price instabilities in global energy markets.

Low maintenance
Even though the initial cost of solar panels is high, there are nearly zero recurring costs. Solar cells usually do not need much maintenance for a long time. You can easily add more solar panels when needed. The initial cost incurred at the time of purchase can be recovered in the long run usually between 10 to 15 years.
The bottom line
Over the years, there has been consistent increase in solar power technology. Our non-renewable energy sources have started declining; therefore it is imperative for the whole world to shift towards renewable sources of energy. Nevertheless, there are several things preventing solar energy from being utilized more extensively. The good news is that the improvements in solar power technology will help to eliminate some of these disadvantages so that its usage will increase as more people will be able to clearly see the benefits offered by solar energy. Regardless of the reason you’re opting for solar energy, one thing is for sure: you’re contributing to the preservation of the environment and encouraging global sustainability.
Benefits of Solar Power -- by Patricia Laddich Benefits of Solar Power -- by Patricia Laddich Reviewed by kensunm on 7:00:00 PM Rating: 5

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