Why You Should Go Solar in 2015
The sun’s rays do more than make a day warm and pleasant. When properly captured, the sun’s energy — known as solar power — is both clean and eco-friendly. This is a welcome change from fossil fuels and other energy sources that use up valuable resources and pollute the earth, among other negative side effects. Fortunately, renewable energy sources like solar power have become more and more accessible to the public, and there are plenty of reasons to put it to use in your home. Below are three of them.
1. Solar Power is Easy on the Earth
As previously mentioned, solar technology is much easier on the earth than fossil fuels. Using the sun’s energy won’t release carbon, methane, or any other particulate emissions. These gases and particulates are what make fossil fuel usage so damaging to the environment—they hasten global warming, among other undesirable side effects—and solar energy circumvents that. Furthermore, it doesn’t require any sort of mining or drilling to harvest, unlike oils and fossil fuels. Solar panels might take up space if they’re placed in otherwise untouched environmental areas, but many are designed to cover roofs and make even better use of manmade structures. That’s a win-win.
2. Solar Power Fattens Your Wallet
The initial investment in solar panels for your home or business might be steep, but the cost might just be worth it. For one, the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy offer tax cuts to Americans who install solar panels at their homes. You can claim 30 percent of the cost of your solar panel installation if you do it before 2016. This applies even if you apply your solar panels on your secondary or vacation home, and there’s no limit on the dollar credit that you can receive in return.
Once your solar panels are in place, you’ll continue to reap the financial benefits. It doesn’t cost anything to soak up the sun’s rays and use their power. This means that your utility usage will shrink, along with your power bill. In fact, some experts have calculated an average savings of $20,000 over a 20-year period for Americans who use solar energy.
3. Solar Power Breaks Bonds to Business
No one can block your access to the sun. This means that solar energy allows you to power your home without going through a middle man. It also means that your power source can’t be bought, sold, or monopolized — you’ll never have to worry about unfair pricing, which is certainly liberating. And, while this is a freeing feeling for individuals who install solar panels, it’s also a plus for the city, state, and country in which you live. If more residents invest in this technology, it means that countries can rely less and less on fossil fuel imports that so often cause tense relationships between the haves and the have-nots. For example, the Ukraine has been able to cut down on fossil fuel usage so much that they’ve saved $3 billion by reducing their imports from Russia. Now, go out there and soak up some sunshine. It’s good for you, your planet, your wallet, and your country. What’s better than that?
James works for a Caterpillar company and blogs in his free time at Homey Improvements. He also enjoys hiking, photography, and buying new gadgets. Follow him on Twitter @DIYfolks.