What are the Economic Impacts of Solar Energy

What are the Economic Impacts of Solar Energy

Discover the profound economic impacts of solar energy, from job markets growth in the solar sector to substantial cost savings for users. Government incentives, enhanced property values, and energy security further underscore the economic viability of solar power.
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When the government acknowledges and incentivizes solar energy users, that is when you know that they are on to something good.

According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), solar has been enjoying an average annual growth of 22% in the last ten years. This massive growth in just a short amount of time can be attributed to a number of factors such as the continuous increase in demand for a clean and renewable source of energy, technological advancements in the solar sector that allow panels to be more efficient when converting sunlight to electricity, strong and attractive federal incentive systems like the solar investment tax credit to solar users, and the rapid decline in the cost of solar energy systems.

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At the same time, due to the undeniable positive effects of going solar not only for the environment and the end-users, this industry is now considered an economic engine which means great news for the community. Let us find out what are the economic impacts of solar energy to the community and the solar users. This will give us a greater understanding of why more people are shifting to this type of energy source and why the US along with the rest of the world has nothing but full support for it.

Growing Job Market in the Solar Sector 
The job market in the solar industry is looking brighter than ever. Since the solar industry keeps on growing with each passing year, it should not come as a surprise that more jobs are created because of this. Published by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) last July 2023, the report showed that as of December 2022, there were a total of 263,883 solar workers in all 50 US States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The continuous demand for solar energy only means more manpower such as installers, engineers, electricians, assembly line workers, sales people and key decision makers are needed to look after the solar energy systems. More job opportunities mean an increase in the employment rate which then indicates an increase in economic spending leading to economic growth.

Cost Savings for Solar Users 
Solar users understand that the upfront investment required during solar installation will be offset through the significant long-term savings on their electricity bills. While it may take them some time before they get their ROI, savings can start as soon as they switch their solar systems on as that will mean lower dependence on the grid and of course, a smaller electric bill to pay.

Enhanced Property Value 
Many homebuyers consider energy efficiency an important factor when choosing the right property. This and the fact that solar power is a great source of clean and renewable energy has improved the value of real properties with solar systems in place by 4.1% based on a housing trends report presented by Zillow in 2021. This increased value reflects the long-term cost savings and environmental benefits associated with solar power making homes with solar panels attractive to environmentally conscious buyers as well as to those who are considering long-term savings in their utility bills.

Government Incentives for Solar Users 
The US Government acknowledges and understands the positive impact of solar energy in the country. It is because of this that they have decided to incentivize all solar users as a form of reward and at the same time, to encourage more individuals and business owners to do the same. The Investment Tax Credit (ITC) allows businesses and individuals to deduct 26% of the cost of their solar energy systems from their federal taxes. Aside from this, different states offer additional tax credits and incentives for solar energy users such as sales tax exemptions, property tax reductions, and rebates. Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), net metering, renewable portfolio standards (RPS), and solar grants are other financial incentives solar users can take advantage of. Just make sure to check with the local and state agencies as well as solar installers to see which incentives are available for you.

Energy Security and Independence 
Owning a solar energy system empowers the users to generate their own electricity making them less reliant on traditional power sources like fossil fuels and the electric grid. This opportunity promotes energy security, especially in places where energy supply is unreliable. Energy security whenever a natural disaster strikes such as hurricanes and snow storms is also very crucial. With the decreasing cost of solar power systems and access to a wide variety of options, more homeowners and businesses are investing in solar systems to ensure that they still have power at times when the grid shuts down.

Lower Infrastructure Costs 
The majority of the power grids across the US are old and strained. Solar power can help alleviate the pressure on the grid, especially during peak demand seasons. A widely distributed solar power generation lessens if not eliminates the need for construction and maintenance of new and expensive power plants as well as transmission line upgrades, leading to reduced infrastructure costs.

Boosted Local Economies 
Due to the ever-increasing demand for solar energy, new business opportunities become available throughout the supply chain. This means that additional requirements in the manufacturing scene are expected, the same is true with installation companies and maintenance services. These factors stimulate local economies through the creation of additional jobs and new investments.

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt that harnessing the power of the sun brings a lot of great benefits. Aside from the many positive environmental impacts it brings, solar energy presents a compelling economic proposition. It offers direct cost savings through reduced electricity bills and fosters broader economic benefits. This is a great example of a win-win solution for solar users, solar companies, and the overall economy of a community. Users enjoy long-term cost savings from their solar power systems, solar companies reap their profits from the products they make, the community has a more robust economy, and last but not least, the environment gets a breather.

 

* We want to give credit where credit is due. Professional writer, Ann Matthew, contributed research and content to this blog titled: What are the Economic Impacts of Solar Energy Thank you, Ann, for your contributions!