Solar Energy Can Replace Fossil Fuels Very Quickly
Collecting and storing solar power is not a new concept. In the 1960’s, more than 50,000 solar water heaters were sold in Florida alone. When I bought this house 18 years ago, it had a 20-year old heated-water solar power collection and storage system. Unfortunately, heated-water systems are not too efficient and they need lots of maintenance.
My main objection to solar power collection projects has been the loss of habitat shaded by the collectors and bulldozed for transmission routes. In the video below, Elon Musk points out that the total land area needed to collect enough power to replace fossil fuel in the U.S. is quite small. Moreover, most of it can be from rooftops requiring no further land loss. Okay, if that’s true, I’m sold.
With improved photovoltaic cells and batteries, solar power becomes a practical replacement for fossil fuel generation. This zeros out CO2 production and let’s us turn our attention to other critical issues: population, invasive species, toxic pollution (e.g., pesticides and plastic) and land lost to construction, farming, and harvest (logging and grazing). The video is Musk’s simple presentation of how the sun’s power can replace fossil fuels now.
Here’s the link to reserve your Powerwall. The site includes the information needed to add up your power needs. I expect that Solar City and other installers will soon add estimated costs for power inversion, solar panels, and wiring to their websites.