Solar energy is unarguably the cleanest, purest, safest, most accessible, and most renewable form of energy known to exist on our planet. Installing solar panels for your house can noticeably reduce your reliance on conventional electricity, which can help improve everything from air quality to wildlife preservation, all while providing you with enough power to function happily in your home.
Environmentally, the advantages of solar energy are obvious. Solar energy produces zero emissions, requires no fuel other than sunlight, and the only byproducts ever produced (which are minimal) come during the manufacture, transportation, and installation of the panels. Given our current rate of energy consumption, the fossil fuels will be depleted on our planet quite possibly within the current century. Renewable energy sources are a growing necessity.
But the advantages are far less idealistic than that. The energy cost savings to average homeowners who install residential solar panel systems usually cover the cost of installation within two to three years. And continued use of solar panels can even result in a complete elimination of your energy bills. Some solar houses actually produce more energy than they need, and the surplus is then fed back into the power grid, and energy credits are provided to the homeowner. The short version? Installing solar panels for your house can conceivably end up making you money.
As the quality of the technology grows, so does the number of people using it. And as the number of people using the technology grows, there is more incentive for manufacturers to improve the technology. This self generating momentum has resulted in a 20% increase in solar energy usage in the past 15 years. While the current percentage of the total amount of electricity produced is close to 0.05%, that figure is projected to increase to 14% by 2030, and 25% by 2050, at current production rates. But if technology improvement and consumer usage continue to bolster each other, that rate of increase could easily accelerate.
There may soon come a day when solar panels for your house are simply part of the construction process, when your roof is your solar collector, plain and simple. Over 20% of states in the U.S. have expanded their solar energy efforts, resulting in technological advances, massive energy cost reductions, and mountains of data speaking to the unqualified success of solar implementation. The future is solar energy, and that future is happening as we speak.