Across the United States, an increasing number of people are acknowledging the need for more sustainable energy and power sources. For many of them, this means looking for alternatives to their traditional power companies that largely fuel their enterprise through unsustainable energy sources such as coal or natural gas. This is a significant and sometimes difficult switch depending on where you live.
Fortunately, as more people accept the idea and search for alternatives, costs of installing renewable energy are likely to continue to drop. These changes are also having a profound impact on the traditional power grid system. In order to remain relevant, many power companies are working to incorporate renewables into their power network.
Given this information, there are a multitude of ways in which to incorporate clean energies into your life. This can happen through the installation of your own solar panels or through supporting community development of solar parks that can fuel apartment complexes and community centers. Likewise, supporting renewable legislation and local policies is easier than ever.
Over the past decade, the technology needed to make solar power accessible to all Americans has profoundly improved, which in turn has worked to drive prices down. As the cost of solar power modules goes down, installing panels has become a trend that extends beyond only the environmentally minded. More often, small businesses and investors are looking to solar panels as a way to save or even make money.
Of course, this has worked to make significant waves in the traditional power grid. The power grid system takes a fair amount of experience and skill to manage, which can make it slower to adapt to changing times. Traditional systems are designed to be centralized and regulated so that supply can always keep up with demand and major power outages do not occur.
However, new renewable power systems do not really fit into that model. Rather, they collect energy when conditions allow for it and newly designed batteries allow that energy to be stored at a smaller capacity. This development allows any home or business owner to control their own energy collection, use, and costs. To try to adapt, large monopoly corporations, such as Idaho Power Company in Idaho for example, are investing in their own solar and renewable energy programs.
Given the development of new battery technologies, going solar is more reasonable and effective than ever before. There are still a number of government incentives for choosing that route as well, making it even more affordable. For instance, some federal tax credits offer a break of more than 30 percent on solar panel installation.
The amount of benefit of a solar system in your home depends upon a number factors such as latitude and the amount of shade that may block panels throughout the day. Additionally, if you are able to generate enough energy to sell back to your power company, the amount you earn may depend upon how much you are able to consistently produce and the rate the company is paying. Many companies are now designing panels that can withstand difficult weather and capture energy in semi-shaded areas, so the technology is only likely to get better.
If you are building a new home, installing solar panels can actually make a big difference on its value when it comes time to sell. For instance, some reporting has indicated that buyers in certain areas were willing to pay up to $15,000 more for a home already equipped with a solar setup. Between this added home value, government incentives for installation, and the monetary benefits of producing your own energy, there are tons of reasons to consider solar as a great option.
Beyond just your home or business going solar, there are multiple benefits to the whole community going solar. For instance, in small communities in Scotland, they are actually making money on the wind electricity they are producing and transferring to larger cities. In London, community-owned solar parks are able to provide electricity for entire apartment complexes.
There are a number of government initiatives in forward-thinking states and communities that are encouraging the development of these solar farms. California, for instance, has a mandate that is requiring a boost in renewable production by 50 percent before 2030. Doing so is will hopefully cut greenhouse gas emissions by upwards of 80 percent before 2050.
Solar communities may provide more of a market and foothold for traditional power companies that are willing to adapt to a changing market. These companies can become involved through offering renewable installation services, buying back and redistributing excess production from homeowners, and operating renewable energy parks. All of this can help spur change to an even greater degree.
Energy markets are changing at a rapid rate. Particularly in the realm of solar energy, developments in battery technology are enabling even more rapid and efficient transfers to renewable. This is making installing solar panels and developing solar communities more a reality than ever before, and is giving hope for a more energy-sustainable future.