Solar Energy in your future…
To understand why solar energy will play a dominant role in your future we need to examine three areas…
Global Energy Demand | Sources of Energy | The Solar Resource
Once we’ve examined those areas, we can take a look at what it all means for the average homeowner.
Global Energy Demand
Global energy demand is set to increase dramatically during the 21st century. As more people in India, China, and other developing nations move from a low-impact village life to a middle-class life, their energy demand will increase significantly.
Think about it. The American lifestyle people are striving for includes bigger homes, more electronic gadgets, more vehicles, and just more stuff that uses energy. All of this results in energy consumption that can be up to 30 times greater than the average person in China or India currently uses. More than 200 million people made this move over the past 30 years, and there’s 200 million more on their way. As you can imagine, the demand for energy is growing at a blistering pace!
So, where does all this energy come from?
Sources of Energy
Today we get most of our energy from fossil fuels such as oil, coal, and gas. But there are a couple of issues with this.
The first issue is the environmental damage caused by burning fossil fuels. When fossil fuels are used to generate electricity they release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. This contributes to global warming. The second issue is that all of the easy-to-find and easy-to-extract fossil fuels have already been found. This means that as time goes on, it will continue to get more expensive to find and extract fossil fuels. This in turn will lead to higher prices for the end consumer. Taking both of these issues with fossil fuels into account, you can see that alternative energy sources will need to come into play in a significant way in order to meet the global energy demand. These alternative energy sources include renewable energy such as solar energy, wind, biomass, hydro-electric, and geothermal.
But why use solar energy? Well… Of all the renewable energy sources, solar energy holds the most promise for providing a sustainable energy source. The German Advisory Council on Global Change is forecasting that by 2100 solar power will be the largest source of global energy.
Let’s take a look at the solar resource to better understand why solar energy will become a major source of energy.
The Solar Resource
There are several reasons why solar energy is the most promising alternative energy resource for our future. Scientist estimate that our Sun will continue producing solar energy for another 5 billion years! Talk about a sustainable energy source! We definitely do not have to worry about running out of solar energy. It is the ultimate renewable energy available to us. Did you know that in one hour enough sunlight reaches the Earth to supply its energy needs for an entire year? So not only is it sustainable, but it provides more than enough energy for our needs. We just need to continue improving our solar technology so that we can capture more of this energy and put it to productive use. But even with today’s technology solar energy makes sense. A 100-square mile solar energy field in the Southwestern United States could provide enough energy to meet the entire U.S. energy demand. And for a homeowner who takes advantage of solar electricity, solar heating, solar cooling, and solar lighting, their home will use less energy than it produces.
What it Means for Homeowners
As the demand for energy increases, solar energy will come to play a dominant role in global energy production. Homeowners will benefit from this in two ways… First, as more utilities, businesses, and even homeowner use solar technology, it will become less expensive. This will make solar energy a great choice for homeowners to use for their homes. Additionally, this will also drive more R&D into solar energy resulting in even more efficient technology. Second, as more utilities build solar power plants, there’s a good chance the energy you receive from your utility will be clean, renewable solar energy. Before you know it, all homes will be net energy producers! And that energy will be clean, sustainable, and renewable.
That’s why solar energy will be a major player in your future!
This article is brought to you by PSA Solar Con