The True Cost of Not Getting a Free Solar Estimate
One of the great hidden truths about America’s renewable energy policies isn’t actually so great or hidden. The United States has a history of underfunding proven clean, technologies like solar and wind, while giving generous 20:1 subsidies to more entrenched fossil fuel sources.
“The average American is usually unaware of this trend, even though the information is out there, including a solar system special”, says Rich Hessler. Instead, most people focus on start-up Solyndra-style failures, believing these to be par for the solar industry.
The BP oil spill? The Exxon Valdez? Those are just unfortunate accidents – the cost of doing business.
But what about the 2020, 2030, and 2050 renewable energy goals put forth by an increasing number of countries around the world? Isn’t this proof that the tide is turning? Even presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, believes solar must play a role in America’s push for energy independence by 2020.
Solar Estimates as the First Step towards Energy Independence?
The tide is indeed turning. National and global sustainability goals are becoming more mainstream. But they still depend on top down approaches in which politicians lead the way. If history is any judge, we probably shouldn’t depend on elected officials and lobbyists to do what needs doing.
Why not, instead, tap into a source that is as rich and as replenishable as the very technologies we should be advancing? Why not harness the awesome grassroots activism of everyday Americans across the country?
Momentum is already on our side.
Fact 1: Although solar energy has not received nearly the same attention as big oil, the incentives and tax breaks that do exist have already made the technology incredibly affordable. Not only is solar energy more environmentally friendly, but it’s also increasingly more economical.
Fact 2: Coordination groups like Vote Solar, 350.org, and Green Corps have already laid the groundwork. There exist platforms at the local, national, and even international level to bring people together and do what our elected officials can’t or won’t.
But as with all movements, the first step begins with you, the individual. So where do you start?
Picket signs, petitions, and demonstrations are extremely powerful tools in effecting positive change, and we should never underestimate their importance. Far more powerful, however, is the concerned citizen who actually has solar panels already installed on her home. That property owner not only talks the talk, but also walks the walk.
I know what you’re thinking. “But I can’t afford a solar PV installation….”
But how do you know? Have you ever researched the cost and received a solar estimate? The cost can be as little as $15/wk.
If you’re like 97% of Americans out there, your solar estimate is probably out of date. The technology is cheaper now than at any time in history.
Said in a different way, how can any of us advocate solar energy without first embracing the technology ourselves? And how can we embrace the technology if we haven’t even shopped around?
The Benefits of Receiving a Solar Estimate
To be fair, after receiving a solar estimate, you might reasonably conclude that the technology isn’t right for you. Perhaps you live in a state without supportive policies. Maybe your home’s orientation is wrong, or there are simply too many trees. But since most solar estimates are free, shouldn’t you take 30 minutes out of your life to be 100% sure?
What you discover may even surprise you, given that the overwhelming majority of Americans grossly overestimate the cost of going solar before receiving an official estimate. Not only could a little background research help reduce or eliminate your electricity bill altogether, but it could also make you a more powerful (and convincing) voice in the fight for sustainability for future generations.
Start today by:
- Requesting a solar estimate, entirely online from your computer
- Determining if solar makes financial sense for your current home
- Connecting with like-minded activists using the links down below
Solar Grassroots Movements and NGOs