Incentives for Solar

Winter may be relatively dark and cold, but solar-electric systems (aka photovoltaics or PV) still crank

Prices have plummeted (~99%!!) thanks to strategic federal investments in research-and-development and economies of scale.  

PV is now the least-expensive new electricity source

Benefits of PV: 

  • No emissions. 
  • Electricity generated remains local.  
  • No/few moving parts.
  • Minimal maintenance. 
  • Quiet operation. 
  • No on-site pollution to air, water, soil. 
  • Warranties of 20+ years truly stretch to many more decades. (Our first system is 23 years old and still working A+.) 
  • Increased property values. 

Financial incentives motivate: 

Net-metering policies further make the financial case: 

  • Surplus power generated during the day (often most expensive) flows into the electricity grid, spinning your meter backward, reducing your power bill. 
  • During nighttime (much cheaper electricity) and stormy weather, power flows into your home from the grid. 
  • A properly sized system should balance so what you generate is what you use over a year’s time. 
  • States/utilities have myriad net-metering policies, mostly driven by politics. Database > zip code > filter for Category > Regulatory Policy.

Note: A power outage on a sunny day will leave you stranded unless you have back-up batteries and/or a generator. More about battery storage in a future post. 


Laura & Gil

Our friends Laura & Gil Richardson are, in their own words, “imperfect” but they are much further down this Planetarian path than anyone I know. They are a treasure trove of sustainable living inspiration and we’ve asked them to share one simple swap per week that they’ve made (and the products they love) in hopes it might inspire you to make them, too.

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