Solar energy is a renewable and unlimited source of energy from which , indirectly or directly, most of the other sources of energy on our planet originate. Today, thanks to the rapid progress of technology, solar energy has become more affordable and more efficient, so it is no wonder why so many homeowners and companies around the globe want to use it. There are many reasons why homeowners are interested in solar energy. For instance, this is a type of energy that can save you a lot of money and even full independence from the public electric grid. The solar panels for this purpose are very practical and simple to install and replace. Finally, many people like solar energy because this is an environmentally-friendly use of energy. By using solar energy instead of other types of energy people are protecting the environment.
Though the U.S. isn’t the biggest producer of solar energy in the world, the growth rate in the past few years is incredible. The number of people who turn to solar energy is growing each year. In addition, the US has a long history in this field and the first solar power in the world was constructed in California.
As we all know, the United States covers a huge area and include areas with different climate and geographic characteristics. Generally speaking, the US is a country that has a big potential for solar energy use because there are places where the sun is shining more than 70% of the time. In addition, the latest solar energy solutions allow better efficiency for solar energy collectors making them less dependable on the weather.
It is also good to mention that there are many incentives from federal and local authorities that encourage people to use this type of energy. Some of the most popular federal incentives include the ones offered through Solar America Initiative and SunShot Initiative. On the other hand, states and local authorities are offering incentives too.
It seems that these incentives as well as the increased awareness among people about the benefits of solar energy have increased the interest in it especially in certain states that have great potential. There are currently 14 states that are offering a sub ten year payback period for direct owned systems. Some of these states include California, New Mexico, Arizona, South Carolina, New York and New Hampshire.
In addition, Governor Jerry Brown has signed the legislation requiring utilities in California to use at least 33% solar energy by 2020. Louisiana has a 50% tax credit up to $12.000 for the installation of solar system. This incentive is available for wind systems too. New Hampshire has a residential rebate program for up to 50% of system cost. The fact is that even those states who didn’t show interest in solar energy are now working on finding a way to use this alternative source of energy together with few other natural renewable sources.
The future of solar energy in the US is bright and homeowners who had any doubts about this energy in the past should surely take it into consideration now.