Despite all the excitement surrounding solar energy over the last couple of decades, the technology has yet to go mainstream. However, that is slowly starting to change. Perhaps the biggest reason for the slow spread of solar energy has been the high cost associated with converting a household to take advantage of solar energy.
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Distributed generation in the form of wind, landfill gas, and cogeneration got a mention, but solar by far is attracting the most attention from cooperatives and legislators, a panel of experts told the co-op crowd. The panelists also informed co-ops that distributed generation is coming. They were told that it is best to get in front of it and that co-ops should develop their own DG projects.
Solar energy in 2013 removed its training wheels and started competing with traditional energy sources. In the fourth quarter alone, the average weighted price per watt of solar capacity installed dropped by 15%, averaging $2.59 compared to more than $6 in 2010.
In 2013 there was a 47 percent jump in the number of home solar installations in the U.S., and by the end of the year more than 400,000 American homes had solar power. Don Dahler meets one man who uses imagination to help power the change.
Saying it will help to create jobs and expand the use of clean, renewable energy in Massachusetts, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), along with its Solar Heating and Cooling Alliance (SHC), are urging the State Senate to adopt S. 1970, allowing renewable thermal technologies to qualify for the Alternative Portfolio Standard and provide a credit that incentivizes renewable thermal technologies.
Partly driven by an oversupply of cheaper panels from China, the domestic solar market had its best year in 2012, with the growth in installations outpacing that of the global market, according to an annual report to be released Thursday.
The millionth solar panel has been installed at a sprawling desert power plant that will feed energy to San Diego-area utility customers as soon as late spring, the project developer said Tuesday.
A few area schools are taking advantage of the Texas sun and seeing significant savings from the use of solar panels.
Supporters of dirty fossil fuels would have you believe that developing renewable energy in Nevada doesn’t create jobs, is bad for the environment, and will cause your utility bill to skyrocket. This could not be further from the truth and their real objective is to shift the attention away from clean energy to maintain the status quo.
Why don’t power-thirsty smartphones incorporate solar cells, to reduce the reliance on batteries? Because in general, the kind of solar cell that can be fabricated in a lightweight, flexible and durable form does not capture enough energy per square inch to make it worthwhile.