Solar Power: The Ultimate Guide to Solar Power Energy and Lower Bills: (Off Grid Solar Power Systems, Home Solar Power System) - Mark Prentice, James Bickel (2016)
Book 1. 20 Hacks to Build Your Own Affordable Solar Power System
Chapter 1. Going Solar - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
There is no question that solar energy has been a hot topic for years. Environmentalists are quick to point out its benefits both economically as well as environmentally. Unlike fossil fuels that will one day be depleted from the earth’s stores, solar power will be around for as long as the sun, which makes it one of the most reliable resources for energy that we can have.
However, some have questioned whether the benefits are as good as claimed. In fact, there are quite a few groups that have been actively opposing it.
Solar Energy: The Good
Fortune Magazine said it best when it predicted that solar energy would be the technology to watch in the coming years. It’s not just sweeping the nation but the world with countries like
China and India making massive investments in it.Because so many are now getting on the bandwagon, what was once an expensiveinvestment and a privilege few people could afford, the cost of solar power is steadily dropping into an affordable range for more people.
Economically, this is a windfall for everyone. Whether you’re a homeowner, business, or a corporation being able to lower the cost of electricity can have a positive impact on your bottom line. A solar powered system can even generate free power to sell back to your utility company. With an average 25 year lifespan for a system solar represents thousands of dollars in savings every year.
To that end, you’ll likely have a fixed rate when it comes to your power bills. Over the past ten years, energy costs have increased by approximately 3% a year but with solar power you can freeze your energy expenses and they need not go up any further. In fact, in some cases you can even turn your meter backwards and earn a little cash in the process.
Solar can also increase your property value. With property appraisers taking a keen interest in solar installations, your property will be that much more desirable to a homebuyer.
Solar Energy: The Bad
While having solar power seems like the answer both economically and environmentally, it is still a business that is finding its balance. As of now, solar energy needs to be stored so it can be used when the sun is not shining. However, as of today, there is no battery that is designed specifically for solar energy.
The batteries you choose to store your energy will have to be adapted for use in your solar home. According to Solar Trend, residential battery storage for solar power will not be available until sometime in 2017 or later.
In most areas, solar energy is still marketed as a“boutique” product. This means that while it is gaining in popularity over the years, there will still be a struggle for credibility on the worldwide front. Those who go solar will often find themselves gaining independence from energy companies but find in some areas they will still have to battle it out in proving their viability.
Solar Energy: The Ugly
As more and more people turn towards solar energy, expect to get some flack from the local utility companies. Just like in the auto industry, there is still a lot of push back from energy companies against environmentally friendly cars. These large corporations rely on our use of these more expensive fuels to survive. To that end, utility companies are presently lobbying state regulators to impose additional fees for those who choose to use solar energy in their homes.
Still, even with the negatives of solar energy, we are looking at a maturing industry that looks to bring great opportunities to many people the world over. If you’re new to the solar movement, chances are you probably feel like many others who believe it is a viable option but are just not sure how to get started.
The following chapters will help to clear up some of the confusion and lay some basic groundwork on how to get your own solar system up and running.