It is not surprising that eco-friendly forms of energy are setting the standard for electricity generation. Solar power is just one of the sources many are investing in and using in their daily lives. Although the idea has been around for many years, finding a practical method to harness the sun’s energy has been elusive until recent years. In fact, the first solar cell was invented in the 19th century, but lacked interest from the public at large.
Modern solar power panels are merely a light-collecting device that converts light into an electric current. The environmental movement and science community have patiently awaited the acceptance of solar energy by the masses, however, it has been a long time coming for many reasons. One of the main reasons solar power didn’t become widely used initially was because of the rich supply of coal-based fuels. Coal was in great abundance and cheap for many years. A growing industrial nation such as the United States, found coal to be readily accessible and cheap to convert into useful fuels, however, the impacts of fossil energy would soon be in doubt.
The release of studies that show carbon-based pollution was at the core of worsening environmental conditions caused law makers -and public perception- to be altered. The gas shortage of the 1970’s was the beginning of the end for the longevity of coal as a source of energy. Rising gas and oil prices have many calling to have more oil wells drilled, and others would like to incorporate the use of solar power panels.
There are many advantages to using solar energy today. For one, it will help to reduce carbon emissions, which will lead to a far purer environment. Another compelling reason to utilize solar power is the cost savings average users will experience. The most common way to use solar power currently is by having solar panels installed on your roof. You may have noticed houses with several rows of panels mounted on the sunny side of rooftops. Many home builders have even offered the installation of solar panels to entire communities, where every single home has solar power panels incorporated into the infrastructure.
It’s sometimes believed that these residential solar panels collect enough energy to supply that home’s electrical demand. This is not normally the case. Power generated from panels installed on a home actually becomes part of the larger power grid in your surrounding area. What you’re doing is collecting energy and then transferring much of that energy back into the grid for use when it’s needed the most. Because you are providing a positive gain of electricity back into the grid, you are given substantial discounts on your regular utility bill.
You could also collect and use solar energy just for your home’s utilisation, but this requires a significant investment of back-up batteries and systems to store and deliver the power. This might be practical for a smaller house or vacation property with smaller electrical needs, but a standard home couldn’t collect enough power without having a large bank of solar power panels. This isn’t ideal for most homeowners because there isn’t the space or desire to set up a large number of panels.
Saving money is an effective motivation for encouraging people to take action, but when you can save money and be environmentally-friendly at the same time, you provide many more reasons to incorporate solar technology into our everyday lives.