Solar energy is still a developing energy with technological advances continually being made to make it more cost efficient and more abundant. Currently it is still a form of electricity that is only used by a minority of households, either as self-contained rooftop installations or on the grid direct from a solar power plant.
There are still pockets of opposition to the development of more solar farms with the main criticism being that it is a very expensive way to create electricity. While this is true compared to the traditional use of fossil fuel such as coal, if you take a wider view and compare the cost with what it is saving the world in terms of non-renewable resources you could say that the extra dollars are a small price to pay.
There are definitely advantages to using solar power and some of these advantages are more important to some people than others. Here is a brief list:
- Solar energy is a renewable energy source. This means that no matter how much sunlight or heat we use to create electricity it won’t be exhausted.
- The creation of electricity does not disrupt neighboring residents. This is a completely silent process.
- Creating electricity from solar power does not produce pollutants, unlike coal-based electricity.
- Electricity from solar panels can be generated in locations that are isolated from an electricity grid without the need to run electricity cables all over the place.
- Solar power gives you the potential to become completely independent from a utility company.
- Over the long term you can save money on your power bill, in some cases not only will you no longer have to pay for your electricity, if you generate enough the power company could pay you for the excess electricity added to the grid.
- Once installed solar panels and solar cells don’t require any maintenance.
- Apart from the sun, solar energy requires no fuel.
- Your hot water bill will be greatly reduced after the installation of a thermal hot water system.
- With the development of CSP, it is possible to continue producing electricity from solar energy after the sun has gone down, or on cloudy days.
- Solar power can be used by a wide range of devices as well as for the production of electricity to power your home. Lights, watches, calculators, cars can all be powered by solar energy.
As was pointed out earlier, some people may not feel as though all of these solar power advantages are applicable to them. But every single person is affected by the increase of power that is generated by a means that reduces the amount of pollution that is pumped into the atmosphere. Forget about talks of the Greenhouse Effect and global warming, our immediate health can be improved by the closure of one power plant that burns coal to generate electricity.