When it comes to finding affordable energy efficiency solutions, many people think that there are only super expensive options out there.
That couldn’t be further from the truth.
Sealing those leaking air ducts is one of the most cost effective and immediate ways to not only make your home more comfortable but also save money by reducing the amount of strain on your heating and cooling equipment. Why? Because when you use an airduct sealing solutions, you close off all of those pesky openings in your leaky air ducts that allow your cool and warm air to seep through the openings and into every area of your home but where you want them to be. Such as behind walls, etc. In some homes, a good 30% of more of air leaks through the air vents. Which means they are 30% less effective and 30% of your energy bill is spent on waste.
That’s why you should take a look at an airduct sealing solution such as Aeroseal.
Get rid of hot and cold spots in your home! Halt the accumulation of dust and mold in your home and more important, stop wasting money!
I’m not always happy with some of the journalistic integrity of Rollingstone, but over the last year, they have really gotten their acts together. Case in point, check out their latest article regarding the corruption of states working against Solar Energy and who has been stuffing those coffers with money to do so.
But the birth of Big Solar poses a grave threat to those who profit from burning fossil fuels. And investor-owned utilities, together with Koch-brothers-funded front groups like American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), are mounting a fierce, rear-guard resistance at the state level – pushing rate hikes and punishing fees for homeowners who turn to solar power. Their efforts have darkened green-energy prospects in could-be solar superpowers like Arizona and Nevada. But nowhere has the solar industry been more eclipsed than in Florida, where the utilities’ powers of obstruction are unrivaled.
The Sunshine State has the best solarity east of the Mississippi, and the third-best rooftop solar potential in America. Yet measured by solar production, it ranks just 16th in the nation. It’s dwarfed by solar giants like California. Florida even lags behind Northern states like New Jersey, Massachusetts and New York. “It defies logic,” says former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist. “It’s absolutely absurd.”
The solar industry in Florida has been boxed out by investor-owned utilities (IOUs) that reap massive profits from natural gas and coal. These IOUs wield outsize political power in the state capital of Tallahassee, and flex it to protect their absolute monopoly on electricity sales. “We live in the Stone Age in regard to renewable power,” says state Rep. Dwight Dudley, the ranking Democrat on the energy subcommittee in the Florida House. “The power companies hold sway here, and the consumers are at their mercy.”
The full political might of Florida’s IOUs was on display in December, when a deceptive campaign, funded by the state’s electric utilities, crushed a citizen-led effort to open Florida to solar competition through the 2016 ballot. “When your opponents have no ethical foundation, have unlimited resources and are willing to say and do anything to defeat you,” says Stephen Smith, director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, which led the pro-solar effort, “it’s a tough hurdle to overcome.”
Solar energy has actually been battered in the media and also by investors over the previous couple of years, in big part due to that most people don’t completely comprehend the means it functions, nor exactly how it’s altering power as we know it. However the fundamental fact is that solar power is without a doubt one of the most plentiful power sources around the world, as well as developing electrical power from the sun is getting less expensive each year.
1. You could go solar for next to nothing.
The thriving residential solar market has been driven by $0-down agreements, under which you pay absolutely nothing up-front to get or lease a solar energy system . If you get with a $0-down financing plan, you own the equipment, as well as the power it generates. If you rent, the company that sets up your system and also has the equipment (selling items like tax obligation advantages and renewable resource credit ratings to various other capitalists), and also markets you own the power the system generates for a long-lasting set rate, typically a cost below your energy bill.
These bargains aren’t readily available anywhere due to the fact that not every state is sunny enough or has high enough electrical energy costs making roof solar economical, but families in most of the Southwestern and also Northeastern U.S. could go solar for $0 down today.
2. Solar power is cost competitive with nonrenewable fuel source.
Today, energy agreements for solar energy in the United States are coming in at $0.05 per kWh or much less in bright locations, which is affordable with the expenses to produce electrical energy from nonrenewable fuel sources. In the United States, Australia, India, and Africa, solar designers are winning versus nonrenewable fuel sources and also nuclear power on a cost basis.
What’s amazing about solar power is exactly how rapid expenses are dropping. Over the years the expense of a solar cell has dropped greater than 99 %, and firms remain to cut prices every year. Based on investment banking institutions, in between 2009 and 2014, the price of an industry-leading utility-scale solar energy plant has dropped greater than 50 % from 8.7 cents per kWh in 2009 to 4.3 cents each kWh in 2015.
First Solar (NASDAQ: FSLR) is one of the leaders in building these huge solar energy plants and its CEO states expenses will certainly be listed below $1 per watt totally set up by following year. As just recently as 2011, when the Sunshot program’s $1 each watt objective was revealed, this seemed difficult.
Saving the environment is not the only focus of solar energy but also about how it affects our bottom line. It’s about saving cash and also lowering the effect of increasing product expenses in nations worldwide. Aids like feed-in tolls and also tax obligation advantages are rapidly passing away or being terminated (as is taking place in the U.S.), however the sector will continue to expand no matter what. This is a power source isn’t going anywhere any time soon.
3. Solar energy is going to be big.
Since this fall, over 1 % of all electrical energy created in the United States came from solar power. And since the solar financial investment tax obligation credit history has been extended, by 2020 there can be enough new solar mounted systems every year to create 1 % of the nation’s energy requirements.
All of a sudden, solar power isn’t a small game, it’s the dominant force in brand-new electrical energy generation. According to Bloomberg’s New Energy Finance, in 2015, much more new power generation originated from solar than from natural gas plants. That’s the very first time that’s ever happened.
4. Solar power production is very diverse.
Among the fantastic advantages of solar power is its adaptability. Big solar power plants could cover several square miles, but solar energy can additionally be gathered on individual chargers that can fit in the palm of your hand or carried in a the pocket of your favorite pants or suit..
SunPower is one of the brokers blazing a trail: It’s both constructing the globe’s largest solar energy plant and offering solar cells to firms that make individual battery chargers. Ford has actually even incorporated photovoltaic panels into its C-Max Solar Energi idea vehicle.– turning its plug-in electrical hybrid into a partially self-powering car. It hasn’t hit the dealerships yet, but with electric automobiles expanding in appeal I don’t think it will be long prior to we see advertisements for solar-electric vehicles.
5. There isn’t a more plentiful resource than solar.
There suffices solar power attacking Planet every hr to replace every barrel of oil, every swelling of coal, and also every various other energy source utilized on earth for an entire year.
Check out that once more– There’s enough solar energy striking the planet every hr to change all energy resources made use of around the world in a year. If that’s not a resource investors should take note of, I have no idea what is.
Many homeowners are considering solar powering their homes now that they realize that solar power is great for the environment, but a few other things that can approve your bottom line. A bottom line such as much lower utility bills as well as adding a nice bit of resale value to the home.. Not many other investments can have such a positive impact on the environment as much as a home solar panel system. Here are some of the benefits.
Lower utility bills: This has to be the most glaring advantage of installing solar system . The only gaurantee is that traditional heating and cooling costs are going to rise. But you’ll reduce your energy bills with a solar system. It’s not difficult to see just how much your solar panel system will produce in terms of usable energy. It’s abut more difficult in predicting how much this will affect your energy bill. Only thing you can bet on is that your bills will have a great chance of being lower.
Simplicity: The solar panel system is believed to be a huge technological undertaking but really? It’s not. Maintaining a system is as easy as:
Maintaining a PV system is simple. You usually don’t need to do anything at all. While it may seem like your panels are getting very dusty, the affect on power output is much less than you’d think.
Simplicity ensures reliability. The systems have long lifetimes because there are no moving parts. You can expect your solar PV system to operate for more than 25 years.
Very few energy production alternatives give you the ease and simplicity of solar.
Subsidies: The Government has a lot to gain by helping incentivise and in promoting solar power since its major beneficial environmental impact. Not only is it great for the environment as a whole, let’s face the fact that is also has desirable political ramifications of The United States being an energy independent Nation. The best way to promote solar power, of course, is to get more people to invest in it, and the best way to do that is to subsidize it and drive the net costs down. (Net cost is the amount you pay, out of pocket, for your system; it’s the starting price minus all the subsidies and rebates that you receive.)
Subsidies, rebates, and tax breaks are widespread, and they’re becoming more prevalent every day. In some parts of the country, the total discount on a system cost can be more than 50 percent.
So should you buy now or wait? Although solar contractors inevitably tell you to buy now, the fact is, nobody knows where net costs are going. The only certainty is that utility power is going to become more expensive, and probably much more expensive. But because government incentives change so much, it’s impossible to predict what the net cost of a system is going to do simply because it’s impossible to predict what politicians are going to do. Net prices have come down in the last few years, particularly in light of the ITC (Investment Tax Credit) change. People who bought systems a few years ago have seen their neighbors install identical systems for thousands of dollars less.
Ultimately, you’ll have to answer the timing question for yourself. Stay abreast of the changing laws by reading newspapers and magazines. You’ll find literally thousands of alternative energy promotions being discussed by various government bodies, and any one of these can impact the net cost of a solar PV system.
In case you haven’t following this news out of Nevada and Arizona, big business fat cats have been trying to lobby and systematically squash the growth of solar energy in favor of local power companies. The same people who tout free-market economies don’t seem to be living up to those ideals when their energy conglomerate masters aren’t the ones benefitting…
Everything that is happening in the solar industry is happening in Nevada right now.
On the one hand, President Obama announced a slew of new incentives and financing mechanisms for renewable energy and efficiency Monday at the 8th annual Clean Energy Summit in Las Vegas, hosted by solar champion Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV).
But he also seemed to be taking the local utility to task during the speech. On Wednesday, Nevada’s public utility commission (PUC) will decide whether to agree with a proposal by the local utility and implement huge rate increases in solar customers that industry insiders say will completely devastate the residential market in the state.
“We see the trend lines. We see where technology is taking us. We see where consumers want to go,” Obama said Monday. “That, let’s be honest, has some fossil fuel interests pretty nervous, to the point where they are trying to fight renewable energy.”
Nevada is — so far — a solar success story. The state is in first place in per capita solar jobs. Investment in solar quadrupled last year to more than half a billion dollars. There are more than 100 solar companies in Nevada, including six manufacturers. And the only reason solar customers’ electricity rates are even up for debate is that the installation cap under the old rate was hit last week, six months earlier than the utility estimated.
Under an agreement hammered out earlier this year, public utility NV Energy’s net metering program — under which solar customers are paid market rate for the electricity they put back onto the grid — would be reconsidered by the end of the year, sometime before the 235-megawatt (MW) cap was hit. Now, solar installers are in limbo. The PUC could accept NV Energy’s proposal that would add fees and charges to solar customers’ bills.
“This proposal is a thousand pages. It’s incredibly complicated,” Chandler Sherman, a spokesperson for SolarCity, told Think Progress.
Sherman said the proposal includes nine new fees, taxes, and charges, which are often difficult for residential customers to understand. “They are really just designed to make it harder for people to go solar,” she said.
Among the additions is a nearly $14 per kilowatt hour (kWh) demand charge. That means that a customer’s peak demand during the month would be multiplied by $14 and added to the electricity bill, which currently just calculates a customer’s usage. The surcharge would only apply to solar customers. These types of charges are difficult to estimate and are incredibly rare for residential customers in the United States.
“If your teenage kid plugs his guitar into the garage, you’re screwed,” Will Craven, a spokesperson for the Alliance for Solar Choice, a rooftop solar industry advocacy group, told ThinkProgress.
Craven, who is also a spokesperson for SolarCity, would know. He was active in the fight against Salt River Project’s proposal to hit solar customers in Arizona with fees. That proposal, which passed last year, gutted the solar industry in SRP’s service area.
After the charges went through, SolarCity relocated 85 employees out of Arizona, as residential applications for solar fell 96 percent. “A lot of the state’s domestic companies were not able to survive,” Craven said. “You are not able to go solar in SRP’s territory anymore.” Read More at Thinkprogress