Solar Powered Technology: A Think Piece

Solar Powered Technology: A Think Piece

In a panicky report from The Associated Press, the solar energy industry is apparently in somewhat of a crisis. Why? In order to quote AP directly: “The U.S. solar power market seems to have hit a wall this year. The number of Americans who installed solar panels at their homes this spring was nearly 90 percent lower than it was a year ago.” Someone has a case of the Terrible, Horrible, No Good Very Bad Day! …Right?

Well, at that I have to say is: look on any other energy source’s darkest days and you will see cases of even greater peril. If someone is trying to cast shade on solar energy, I can guarantee you that there are others trying to shine a light.

I feel the need to throw some support behind solar power because if this great country wants America to be energy independent then we should consider using all available resources. We cannot overlook the potential of solar power, no matter how bleak certain precincts may paint it. Solar power has been around since the early 20th century and yet it is only recently coming into its own as a viable energy source that could help us to leave behind the very last vestiges of our fossil fuel dependency.

The solar power industry in America has been called all sorts of things over the years, but I think the newest label is by far the most disheartening. It may seem like the solar industry is withering on the vine, but I would say that it’s more like a plant in need of some pruning and care to make it flourish again.

The first thing that we should understand about solar power is that our country has far too much land mass to ever expect solar power to be a completely feasible energy source on its own. Solar energy is most effective when it is used in combination with other renewable technologies such as wind and hydroelectric plants that can help to pick up the slack when solar panels aren’t operating at maximum output.

I’m not going to sit here and try to sell you some false bill of goods that tells you that solar power is all sunshine and rainbows. It would be irresponsible for me to tell you otherwise, but I do have a dream – a dream where we can leave behind all of the negativity and pessimism surrounding solar power so that it has a chance to grow up and reach its full potential as a renewable energy source.

Solar power has to overcome quite a bit of adversity, but that adversity often comes from those who yearn for the status quo. There is nothing wrong with solar power and I will fight tooth and nail to make sure it gets the respect and attention it deserves as a viable energy source!

There are those who would tell you that solar power is nothing more than a passing fad and they’d be wrong. Solar power has been around since long before it was cool – heck, the Egyptians were using it to heat the hot tubs at their resorts.