There has been a lot of talk in the news recently about the solar power industry. California recently passed a law that is going to require every home built from 2020 on to have solar panels installed on its roof. California has been feeling the heat of climate change for a few years now, and so their legislature took the step of mandating solar panels on every home built after 2020 as a way to help mitigate those effects. Solar power has also been in the news because of the Trump administration’s decision to leave the Paris climate agreement. The US is the only country in the world that’s not a part of the agreement. The agreement itself is aimed at reducing carbon emissions around the world, and a big piece of those carbon reductions are supposed to come from increased solar power production in countries like the US and decreased power production from dirty fossil fuels like coal and oil. Since the US pulled out, there’s been a lot of talk about how that’s going to impact the solar industry.
While there are some people who believe the US leaving the Paris Agreement is going to really hurt the solar industry, that hasn’t been what’s happened since Trump’s decision. In fact, the solar industry is seeing even more development and investment since that decision. Why is this happening?
There are two primary reasons: money and the environment. Let’s start with the money. The fact of the matter is that solar panels are able to produce energy at a lower price point than traditional forms of energy like coal. Politicians and governments can do everything in their power to prop up the coal industry, but eventually the solar industry is going to surpass it. That’s because it’s cheaper for companies to produce solar energy than it is for them to produce coal energy. Companies are always looking for cheaper ways to produce energy, and homeowners and utility companies also want cheaper forms of energy. As technological advances continue to occur in the solar industry, the costs of producing solar energy are only going to decrease further. Market forces are going to help drive the transition to solar energy, and there’s relatively little anyone can do to stop this.
Secondly, a lot of individuals, utility companies, and businesses have become increasingly concerned about the negative impacts of burning fossil fuels, namely air pollution and climate change. Thus, they’re switching to solar energy over coal energy because it doesn’t produce air pollution and it creates energy without creating carbon. When you combine the positive environmental impacts of solar power with the fact that it’s cheaper than coal and many other forms of energy, it’s easy to see why the solar industry is growing in spite of the fact that the Trump administration removed the US from the Paris Agreement.
Companies like Golden Solar understand that the solar industry is here to stay, and that’s why they’ve invested their time and energy into installing solar panels on as many roofs as they can. Their phone keeps ringing for new installations, and it’s going to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.