Government Web Site Touts Solar Energy

The Department of Energy (DOE) has launched a new website that highlights the benefits of solar water heaters and solar electric systems in “saving energy and money at home.” The DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy built the site, located at

Washington, D.C. – July 25, 2003 [] The section on water heating notes that heating water typically accounts for 14 percent of a home’s utility bill and more than 1.5 million homes and businesses in the United States have invested in solar water heating systems and over 94 percent of these customers consider the systems a good investment. Solar water heating systems are also good for the environment, according to the site’s figures. During a 20-year period, one solar water heater can avoid over 50 tons of carbon dioxide emissions. The section on solar electric begins: “In a surprising number of instances, solar electricity (photovoltaics) can be a cost-effective source or form of power.” The site then provides extensive information and links for purchasing a solar electric system. “This is a good government initiative that will help homeowners save money while protecting the environment,” said Glenn Hamer, Executive Director of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). “After all, the Department of Energy is simply asking the public to consider technology that the White House already employs.” The White House complex now employs both solar water heaters and a solar electric system. “With natural gas in short supply, now is the perfect time to push for greater deployment of renewable energy,” Hamer said.
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