The Importance of Solar Energy in Our Society

The benefits of solar energy are many. But the issues that motivate people most have to do with economic stability, security, and the condition of the environment.

The Economics of Solar

The cost to produce Photo-voltaic, solar-thermal cells and their accompanying equipment is decreasing exponentially. This is because the more solar collectors a manufacturer produces or owns, the less energy they have to purchase or manufacture in order to run the equipment necessary to produce more solar collectors. It holds for individual companies and it holds for society as well. In 2002 the cost to produce 100 kW was about $9. By 2012 that had dropped to about $5 per kW for household systems. While some rue the perpetual greed of big corporations for keeping solar power from becoming ubiquitous, the fact is that they too will benefit from the ever growing cost effectiveness of solar technology. Residential solar power is becoming more affordable as technology becomes cheaper for companies to produce at scale. This site – – has some information about residential solar power plans and their affordability.

Energy Generation Independence

Historically speaking, competition for resources is a primary, reason for conflicts between nations. By implementing solar tech. we can defuse energy competition which has inspired some of the bloodiest conflicts the world has seen. Nations that must go abroad for oil, coal or other energy sources must pay what the holding nation asks for the exchange. We are beholden to those who sell us our fuel, and when negotiations break down- conflict arises. Short of going to war, we may have to compromise our moral principles in order to avoid price spikes. If a supplier nation has a poor human rights record, we may be disinclined from confronting them on it as long as we need their fossil fuel. But when nations and communities develop solar and electric technology, they reduce their dependence on foreign governments for their energy and are free to live by their own standards.

Slowing Environmental Degradation

Those who claim humans may not have caused global warming fail to recognize the fact that we cannot afford to lose the wager of causation. Should humans prove to be the cause of climate change and fail to respond before a global crisis emerges- that would represent our having made a fool’s wager. On smaller scales, of course, the implementation of clean energy technology means cleaner air, water and soil in the communities that use them.

Given the economics of solar power manufacturing, it seem likely that corporate internationals will come on board eventually. But one hopes that they can be motivated to join the push for solar power sooner than later, and do it for the right reasons before its too late. As consumers, we can nudge them in their wallets by demanding solar energy technology now.