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Solar energy is our best solution for a plethora of reasons. It is no longer a niche technology available to the rich and the committed environmentalist. Today, the effects of global warming and the skyrocketing prices of conventional energy necessitate the switch to greener renewable sources of energy.
Rise of Solar Power
The scarcity of fossil fuels and their tremendously detrimental impact on the environment gave solar power the boost it needed. Today, more than 2 million homes in the United States have solar power installations. With states like California passing laws that mandate inclusion of solar panels in new home constructions, and improving technological innovations that are driving down the price of solar panels, it is estimated that approximately a million more solar panel systems will be added every single year.
If you are still on the fence about solar energy being our best solution, consider that in the conclusion of their long-term study the researchers at the LUT in Finland and Energy Watch Group (EWG) state that electrifying EVERYTHING with renewable energy is not just a feasible possibility but also a cost-effective and efficient option that they characterize as the “only sustainable” one. According to the study, “A global transition to 100% renewable energy across all sectors — power, heat, transport, and desalination before 2050 — is feasible.”
Solution to Climate Change
Climate change is a terrifying reality that needs to be countered. Extracting energy from fossil fuels is dangerous for the environment. Switching to an abundantly available and clean source of energy like solar power helps reduce carbon footprint, and keeps harmful greenhouse gas emissions in check. Using solar energy to electrify everything is an excellent way to combat the rising global temperatures.
Puts Money Back in Your Pocket
One of the reasons why fossil fuels form such a huge part of global energy production is because doing so is cheap. However, the detrimental effects of deriving energy from fossil fuels far outweigh this meager economic advantage.
A decade ago, solar energy harvesting was anything but cheap – not so today. Not only do solar energy systems reduce your utility bills and give you the peace of mind of knowing that you are minimizing your carbon footprint, but these systems are economically viable, too. Solar panels pay for themselves with electricity savings, and everything you earn after that is pure profit. What’s more, you end up saving more every year because conventional utility prices keep rising.
Decreasing production costs, improved technological advancements, and state and federal tax breaks are a just a few of the ways in which solar energy installations have become more accessible and feasible. Furthermore, reducing global carbon footprint is estimated to save a whopping $259 billion in climate change damages.
Promotes Better Health and Well Being
The creation of energy from fossil fuels leads to the release of a large amount of air pollutants – byproducts that are completely sidestepped when energy is derived from solar power and renewable sources of energy. Reduced nitrous oxides, particulate matters, and sulfur dioxide positively impacts the cardiovascular and respiratory health of human beings.
According to the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, achieving high penetration of solar power in the country would reduce air pollution and prevent over $167 billion in damages to public health and the environment. Not only would this prevent needless healthcare costs, a move to absolute solar would reduce pollutants that cause childhood asthma, heart problems, and respiratory illnesses in adults, thereby, saving thousands of lives.
Solution to National Security Concerns
The US Military remains on the forefront when it comes to utilizing technological advancements to improve operations and reduce costs. Renewable energy like solar power has a pivotal role to play in national security. Instead of relying on foreign energy sources and volatile supply routes, the US Armed Forces support the use of secure and easily available domestic energy sources.
Solar energy is a free and inexhaustible source of power, which is also rapidly deploy able as compared to conventional sources of energy. With decreasing costs of renewable energy, solar power is the best solution for reducing defense spending on anything other than important mission expenditure. Irrespective of how fossil-fuel friendly the White House seems, the Department of Defense has continued to advocate for the inclusion of clean technology and micro grids to reduce the US Military’s reliance on diesel back-up generators, maximize efficiency, and boost national security.