April 22, 2020, will mark 50 years of Earth Day celebrations and acts of environmentalism in the United States. Earth Day is a great opportunity to reflect on humanity’s reliance and impact on the planet as well as to take steps toward changing consumptive habits.
Much has changed over the course of 50 years, including your ability as a consumer to positively impact the environment in which you live through the use of renewable resources. Installing renewable energy for homes and businesses can mutually benefit the environment and consumers in many ways, explaining why 2019 was a record year for US solar power.
What is Earth Day?
Earth Day’s been around since 1970, and is a day meant to show support for the protection of our precious environmental resources. Originally focused in the United States, it gained international support in 1990. More than a billion people worldwide come together each year to speak on climate change, introduce environmental policies, and clean their communities through trash pickup campaigns, tree plantings, and more. While those are the more mainstream activities, they only take place on one day. Solar panel installation in your home is a great way to introduce the environmental-mindset of Earth Day with year-round benefits.
Read on to learn more about why you should consider solar power this Earth Day as a way to improve your own well-being, as well as reduce your impact on the environment.
Solar Energy Benefits for the Planet
- Nixes Air Pollution: Nothing is burned nor created as a byproduct of solar panels converting sunlight into energy, so there won’t be any emissions — carbon or otherwise.
- Reduces Water Usage: The International Renewable Energy Agency released a 2015 report that solar panel plants use as little as 1/200th the water used by a typical power plant to produce the same amount of electricity. As you can imagine, solar installation is particularly helpful in areas that are water-scarce and experience high temperatures.
- Cuts Fossil Fuels Out: Using fewer fossil fuels means contributing less to global warming. While lowering use is important, cutting fossil fuel dependence altogether and turning toward an infinitely renewable resource like solar energy gives the planet a better chance of recovering from the effects of climate change.
Solar Energy Benefits for You
- Your Health: This report from the US Department of Energy concludes that emission reductions resulting from the implementation of solar will have a positive impact on a range of respiratory and cardiovascular health issues. Less pollution means fewer health issues.
- Your Bottom Line: Solar panels can save you a good amount of money on bills and through tax credits. The question of how much you can save on a bill varies based on a few factors, namely direct sunlight hours, angle/size of your roof and local electricity rates. In terms of tax credits, find more general information from Consumer Reports here.
- Your Financial Future: Believe it or not, solar panels can increase home value. A 2019 report from Zillow found homes with solar panels sell for 4.1% more, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory team of appraisers across six states found home buyers will pay a premium for solar homes.
The 50th anniversary of Earth Day only happens once, but you can have an Earth Day mindset year-round! This year, be sure to take part by getting involved in acts of environmentalism. By all means, please do pick up trash, plant tree saplings, or participate in other classic Earth Day activities. But this year, please also consider taking larger steps to greatly diminish the effects of pollution, climate change and water scarcity such as by investing in renewable energy sources or petitioning for environmental legislation.
If you’re ready to learn more about solar energy or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us here.
Happy 50th Earth Day!
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