In any discussion about climate change, renewable energy usually tops the list of changes the world can implement to stave off the worst effects of rising temperatures. That's because renewable energy sources such as solar and wind don't emit carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. Global warming is one symptom of climate change, the term scientists now prefer to describe the complex shifts affecting our planet’s weather and climate systems. Most forms of renewable energy are seeing solid growth around the globe, according to the new report. When a new energy source is needed, it's increasingly likely that it will be renewable.
Solar photovoltaic (PV) electricity is rapidly increasing its share of global power generation. Globally, a record 98 GW of solar power capacity was installed last year, according to the UN Environment Program’s Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2018 report. This proves that solar power became the fastest-growing source of new energy. In fact, solar now accounts for as much as two-thirds of new power across the globe. Solar energy is a fantastic example of a renewable energy source, it’s way better for the environment than burning fossil fuels, so it’s not surprising more and more people are jumping on the bandwagon. A major benefit of solar energy technology is that it is a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels. Drawbacks include that it is costlier than other clean energies. In short, the sun’s energy can be harnessed and transformed into electricity via devices called solar panels.
Lower prices due to increased production capacity as well as new technology and efficiency breakthroughs are two of the main reasons for the increasing adoption of solar PV around the world in recent years. Government subsidies are another but then they also exist to encourage other forms of renewable energy — even traditional sources in some countries. Off-grid solar projects including solar PV are increasingly viewed as a way of implementing electricity access in developing countries, leapfrogging installations in the developed world.
Benefits of Solar Energy
In light of all the below advantages, it’s hardly surprising that solar energy has seen such a growth in popularity!
1. Solar Power is Renewable
As we’ve previously alluded to, solar energy is 100% renewable. One of the best things about it is that the sun’s rays can be harnessed from all around the globe, virtually every day. For as long as humans wonder the earth- we’ll always be able to use the sun to generate electricity and heat. Sadly, the same can’t be true of other sources of power such as coal (and other fossil fuels) which is why renewable alternatives are so important!
2. Solar Energy Diverse
Solar power is incredibly diverse; you can create both heat and electricity from the sun’s rays. The broader implications of this are phenomenal. Solar power can do everything from generating electricity in regions that currently don’t have access to power- to powering satellites miles away in the atmosphere- how neat is that?
3. Solar Energy Saves Money
Not only does solar energy help save the environment, but it also goes a long way in helping you save a pretty penny or two (in the long run). Obviously, your total savings depends on how many solar panels you’ve installed and your overall electricity usage. However, if you’re able to generate more electricity than you’re using, the surplus travels back to the grid, and you’ll receive some kind of compensation in certain municipalities- what’s not to love about that?!
4. Solar Power is Cheaper to Maintain
One of the best things about solar energy for homeowners and business owners is that solar panels don’t need much maintenance. There aren’t any moving parts involved so there isn’t much that can go wrong. However, you should probably note the inverter usually needs changing once every seven years (approximately). This part is always being used. It never stops working to transform solar energy into heat and electricity.
In light of this, you’ll be pleased to hear that most reputable manufacturers provide a 20-year warranty (or longer- be sure to ask about it). So, if something needs fixing or replacing, you should be able to resolve this relatively inexpensively. If using market leading brands like SolarEdge, they will pay the accredited installer to go out and replace the faulty device if still under warranty.
5. Developments in Technology
Technology in this industry is continually developing. As time moves forward, solar energy will only become more fine-tuned and advanced. Professionals believe that if we carry on advancing the way we have; we could potentially boost the efficiency of solar panels by as much as double in the near future. Think of what that could mean for the environment- it would virtually eradicate the need to burn fossil fuels!