The Boom of Solar Power in the US

HES Solar

Electricity, which is generated mainly from fossil fuels, has become a necessity in the modern world. In an age where natural resources are slowly depleting due to an increase in power consumption, it is time to look for alternate sources. In the past few years the use of solar power has seen an unprecedented growth, at least in the US. Homes, businesses, and schools are rapidly turning towards solar power as an alternate source of energy. Solar power is not only efficient but it also reduces a great burden from the shoulders of this planet. The cost of installing and integrating a solar panel is also low, making it one of the most sought after energy options. Recently the Unites States has seen an increase in the number of people and businesses looking at going solar, causing the solar power in the US to boom.

GROWTH REPORTS

Installation of solar panels in the first quarter of 2016 has seen a growth by 24% as compared to first quarter sales in 2015. A report of online sales of solar panels has shown solar installation to be close to 1 million or a total of 31.6 gigawatts of total installed capacity in the second quarter of 2016. It also means that solar now accounts for over 64% of all new electric generating machines bought online in the US. In terms of total installed capacity, the Solar Energy Industries Association or SEIA predicts a growth of 43% every year. The full report is available on their website. In 2014, solar beat wind energy and coal to become the new generating capacity in US. The US solar industry has seen a surge in the number of employees indicating the popularity and growth of the alternate source of energy.

Below is a graph, recently released by planetsave.com, showing how solar energy has become the 2nd largest source of power in the United States. The graph is an excellent representation of the increase in installed solar (in terms of Mega Watts) over the past six years.

Graph Depicting Solar Growth

SOLAR FARMS

In the remote regions of the US, solar farms have been established which sell solar power to big businesses. Hundreds of acres of land are filled with solar panels generating hundreds of megawatts of solar energy. In some parts of the US, solar energy has become cheaper than fossil fuels. This is one of the reasons why some solar companies building these solar farms have made huge profits. Almost 70% of the solar generated in 2016 has come from the solar farms. These solar farms are also known has “utility solar.” Rather, then the solar being owned by a homeowner or business solar companies will install ground-mounted solar on huge acres of land. The amount of utility solar compared to residential and commercial (or non-residential) solar is represented in the chart above.

BENEFITS

The biggest benefit of solar energy is that it is cheap and easy to install. Residents in the US are saving over $100 a month on their electricity bills. With equipment and solar panels getting cheaper and cheaper every day, it costs little to set up. There are companies which take care of the installation and maintenance and home owners pay only for the electricity consumed. Another benefit of using solar power is that buyers get back 30% of the total systems cost, depending on which state you live in (if you are located in California, like HES Solar, you’re in luck! California offers a 30% tax credit on your installed solar system.) This is due to the removal of the Federal Solar Tax Credit in 2009.

The US has also become a world leader in CO2 emissions. Solar energy is clean and renewable and makes it one of the best reasons to use it. Areas like California and Nevada need to make sure a big part of their energy is clean and so solar energy becomes a natural choice for them. Read about the top benefits of solar here.

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