Mass Clean Energy Center estimates that there will be approximately 2,600 solar installations statewide producing 45 MW of power by the end of 2010. As of June 2010, 11.5 MW of solar power capacity has been installed through the Renewable Energy Trust in the MAPC region, with nearly 2 MW of that installed in Boston. (This figure does not include projects that did not receive rebates from the Renewable Energy Trust, such as in municipalities served by local light plants – only customers of utilities that participate in the SBC can qualify for Trust rebates.)
Is Solar Power Worth the Initial Investment?
The popularity of solar power is now making people ask the above question and this is asked to make sure that they will make the right decision in the installation of their solar power system. There is no general answer to this. The truth is that the answer is dependent on some factors. With careful consideration of these factors, you will be able to answer the question yourself and decide whether it is best for you to use solar power instead of the conventional electricity to power your home.
The first parameter to consider is the location of your home. Since solar energy relies from the sunlight for the conversion of solar energy to electricity, it is important to know whether there is enough sunlight where your house is located. The more sunlight that can be captured in the solar panels, the quicker the solar energy system will pay off your investment. However, if your location gets more rainfall than sunlight, you know that solar power will never be worth the money. It is not worth investing in this alternative source of energy.
The amount of electricity that you need determines the cost of hardware that you need to install for your solar energy system. For a high requirement for electricity, the initial hardware cost will be high and this can pay off later on, given the right location. The savings will not be immediate but with the life span of a solar power system of up to forty years, the long term effect on your finances will be positive. If you have the funds for the initial hardware and installation investment, using solar power will be worth it. Otherwise, you may have to wait for the right time when you can already make that major investment in your life.
If you do not care much about the cost that the installation of solar energy systems and you are concerned about your environment, with the right location, installing a solar system will be worth it. The effect that it can give to the environment with the eliminated emission of carbon dioxide and the improvement of the quality of your indoor air, you will see that the use of solar energy is definitely worth it. The environment and health benefits derived from it outweigh the cost of the installation.
With solar power system’s high start up cost, the decision becomes difficult for some especially that it can take a big slice in the budget. If you do not have the savings for some emergency needs, it may be better to start saving for the requirements of your solar power system than to borrow for the installation. Although in the long run, the benefits will be great, you may have problems coping with the high cost that was incurred for the installation process. The best advice is for you to do it when you are financially ready. It is worth the money if you are in the best location to generate electricity from the abundant source of sunlight.