While commercial solar power has become more popular in recent years, many people still need to become more familiar with all the possibilities solar power brings. That’s why it’s so important, especially in 2023, to learn solar energy facts to stay in the know.
Let’s explore some of the solar energy facts you need to know, especially if you’re interested in commercial solar.
Solar Energy Facts
Why wait? Here are just some critical solar energy facts to convince you to start saving on utilities today.
1. Solar Energy Is A Renewable Energy Source
You probably already know the basics, but they’re well worth repeating. Solar power is derived from the sun’s light and heat, which replenish continually.
Unlike finite fossil fuels, which will eventually run out (not to mention bad for the environment), the sun will continue to shine for billions of years. Not bad!
This helps provide an endless source of energy. And we couldn’t be more thrilled about it. And we want our customers in Orange County to feel the same.
Solar panels can capture energy from the sun and convert it into electricity, which commercial business owners can use to power homes, businesses, and other buildings.
Because the sun is a constantly replenished energy source, solar energy is considered a renewable energy source that will never run out.
Solar energy does not produce harmful pollutants, making it an environmentally friendly energy source. Speaking of which, it’s time to talk about the environment.
2. Solar Energy Is A Clean Energy Source
Solar energy is a clean energy source. In short, it means it does not produce harmful emissions when it is generated and used. Basically, it’s a win-win for business owners looking to adopt a more cost-efficient method of generating power in Orange County.
Traditional energy sources emit greenhouse gasses and other pollutants into the atmosphere when burned. However, solar energy generates electricity through a completely clean and renewable process.
Here are the basics of how solar energy works: Solar panels capture the sun’s rays and convert them into direct current (DC) electricity.
This DC electricity then converts into alternating current (AC) electricity, the type of electricity used to power homes and businesses.
The entire process of generating solar energy does not produce any harmful emissions of pollutants, making it a clean energy source.
The use of solar energy in Orange County can help to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.
That decreases greenhouse gas emissions, leading to a cleaner and healthier environment.
This makes solar energy a clean energy source and an essential tool in the fight against climate change.
3. Solar Energy Can Be Used In Many Different Ways
When you have commercial solar panels in Orange County, you can do more than produce power.
Let’s cover all our bases, though. Here are some great uses for solar energy and how it exhibits its versatility.
- Electricity generation. One of the most common uses of solar energy is for electricity generation. Solar panels can be installed on homes, businesses, and utility-scale solar farms to convert the sun’s energy into electricity. This electricity can be used to power homes and businesses or fed into the electricity grid to be distributed to others.
- Water heating. You can also use solar energy to heat water. Solar water heaters typically consist of a panel that absorbs the sun’s energy and transfers it to a storage tank. Then it’s used to heat water for domestic use or industrial processes.
- Lighting. Commercial businesses in Orange County can also use solar energy to provide light in areas where there is no access to electricity. Lights typically consist of a solar panel that charges a battery during the day and then powers a light at night.
- Solar cookers. Cookers use the sun’s energy to heat food and drinks. They are often used in areas where there is limited access to fuel for cooking.
- Agricultural applications. Solar energy is perfect for use in agriculture for irrigation, water pumping, and drying crops.
The versatility of solar energy makes it a valuable resource for a wide range of applications. Plus, they’re a great fit for any number of businesses, like car dealerships, car washes, and cannabis growers.
4. Solar Panels Are Becoming More Efficient
Good news: solar panels are becoming more efficient as technology advances and production methods improve.
Several factors contribute to the increasing efficiency of solar panels.
- Improved materials. Advances in materials science have led to the development of new materials that absorb and convert the sun’s energy into electricity. This has led to an increase in the efficiency of solar panels.
- Better cell design. The design of the individual cells that make up a solar panel has also improved. By optimizing the design of these cells, more of the sun’s energy can be captured and converted into electricity.
- Improved manufacturing processes. Manufacturing technology advancements have also led to improvements in the production of solar panels. This has led to higher-quality panels that are more efficient and durable.
- Increased use of advanced technologies. The use of technologies such as multi-junction cells. These can capture different wavelengths of light, and back-contact cells, which allow for better energy transfer, have also increased solar panels’ efficiency.
As a result of these improvements, the efficiency of solar panels has increased significantly in recent years and is expected to continue to do so in the future.
This increase in efficiency means more electricity can be generated from the same amount of sunlight, making solar energy an increasingly attractive option for electricity generation.
In short, technology is once again proving to be a boon to savvy business owners looking to save on utility costs.
5. You Can Use Solar Power Off-Grid
One of the more fun solar energy facts is that it can be used off-grid. This means people can use solar energy in areas not connected to the traditional electricity grid. Pretty useful!
If you’re off the grid for any reason, having solar energy in your corner can help out a lot. But ‘off the grid’ doesn’t mean you have to be in a remote cabin in the woods. But more on that in a second.
Using solar power off the grid is done by using solar panels to generate electricity, which is then stored in batteries for use when the sun is not shining.
Some typical off-grid solar energy applications include:
- Remote homes and cabins. Homes and cabins located in remote areas can use solar energy as a source of electricity. This eliminates the need to run power lines to these locations and provides a clean, renewable energy source.
- Emergency backup systems. Solar energy can also be an emergency backup power source for homes and businesses. In the event of a power outage, a solar energy system can provide a reliable source of electricity. Orange County businesses always need a good source of backup electricity if a storm or earthquake messes with the grid.
- Portable power systems. Portable solar energy systems, like solar-powered generators, provide power in remote locations or emergency situations.
- Rural electrification. In developing countries, solar energy provides electricity to rural communities unconnected from a traditional electricity grid. Rural electrification improves the quality of life in these communities and provides access to modern energy services.
Using solar energy off-grid makes it possible to have a reliable source of electricity even in areas that are not connected to the traditional electricity grid. In short, you have total control over your business’s operations in Orange County.
6. The Cost Of Solar Energy Is Decreasing
The cost of solar energy has decreased significantly in recent years, making it an increasingly affordable source of electricity.
We can attribute this decrease in price to several factors.
- Improved technology. Again, technological advancements have led to improvements in the efficiency and performance of solar panels. Plus, reductions in the cost of manufacturing.
- Mass production. The growth in the solar industry has led to an increase in the volume of solar panels produced, which has driven down the cost of production.
- Government incentives. Many governments worldwide have implemented policies and incentives to encourage the use of solar energy, such as tax credits and subsidies. These incentives have helped to reduce the cost of solar energy for consumers. Plus, local power companies like Southern California Edison (SCE) provide incentives for businesses to install electric vehicle chargers for free.
- Competition. The growth in the solar industry has also led to increased competition among solar panel manufacturers, which has helped to drive down prices for your business.
- Falling raw material costs. The cost of the raw materials used in producing solar panels, like silicon, decreased in recent years. This has contributed to the decrease in the cost of solar energy.
The lower cost of solar energy has made it an increasingly attractive option for electricity generation. It leads to a growth in the number of homes and businesses (like yours) installing solar panels.
7. You Can Store Solar Energy
That’s right, you don’t need to take advantage of solar power only when the sun is out. Solar batteries are how solar panels help you keep the lights on well after the sun has gone down.
Again, the process uses solar panels to convert the sun’s energy into electricity. The power accumulates in batteries. When you need electricity, it’s drawn from solar batteries and powers homes, businesses, or other devices. Couple solar batteries with the off-the-grid potential, and you’re entirely self-sufficient.
Solar Battery Types
You can use two main types of batteries for solar energy storage:
- Lithium-ion batteries
Lead-acid batteries are a tried-and-true technology used by businesses and homeowners in Orange County for many years for energy storage.
They are relatively cheap but can have a limited lifespan and may require maintenance. Lithium-ion batteries, on the other hand, are more expensive but have a longer lifespan and require less maintenance.
Another way to store solar energy is through energy management systems.
These systems allow homes and businesses to store excess energy generated by their solar panels during the day and use it when the sun is not shining. This can reduce the need for grid-based electricity and provide a more reliable energy source.
8. Solar Energy Can Create Jobs
Everyone needs jobs. Thankfully, solar delivers employment opportunities as well as savings on your power bill. Solar energy can create jobs in several ways.
- Manufacturing. The production of solar panels and other components of solar energy systems creates jobs in the manufacturing sector.
- Installation. Solar installers are some of the hardest workers around! Installing solar panels and other components of solar energy systems creates jobs for electricians, roofers, and other skilled workers in Orange County.
- Operations and maintenance. The operation and maintenance of solar energy systems create jobs for technicians and engineers.
- Research and development. The development of new technologies and innovations in the solar energy sector creates jobs for scientists, engineers, and other R&D professionals.
- Sales and marketing. The sales and marketing of solar energy systems create jobs for sales representatives, marketing professionals, and other white-collar workers.
- Project management. The development and management of large-scale solar energy projects create jobs for project managers and engineers.
In addition to creating jobs directly in the solar energy sector, the growth of the solar energy industry can also positively impact the broader economy, too. Seeing positive growth in the economy locally in Orange County, as well as nationwide, would be hard to turn down. Easy to say, this is one of our favorite solar energy facts.
9. Solar Reduces Dependence On Fossil Fuels
We are so dependent on fossil fuels these days, and it’s hurting our environment and our wallets. Solar energy can help reduce dependence on fossil fuels in several ways.
- Direct energy generation. You can use solar energy systems to generate electricity directly, reducing the need for electricity generated from fossil fuels.
- Displacing grid-based electricity. Solar energy systems can be used to displace grid-based electricity, reducing the demand for electricity generated from fossil fuels.
- Reducing energy consumption. Solar energy systems can reduce energy consumption by providing a reliable, clean, renewable energy source, which helps reduce the need for fossil fuels.
- Decentralized energy generation. Orange County solar installers can install solar energy locally, enabling communities to generate their own electricity and reducing their dependence on fossil fuels.
- Limiting energy imports. By generating their own electricity, communities, and countries that rely heavily on energy imports can reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and increase their energy security.
This reduction of fossil fuel dependence will positively impact the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful pollutants.
Additionally, reducing dependence on fossil fuels helps reduce the vulnerability of communities and countries to fluctuations in the price of oil and other fossil fuels.
Overall, the use of solar energy has the potential to play a significant role in reducing dependence on fossil fuels and transitioning to a more sustainable energy system and a cleaner future for all.
10. Solar Is Available All Over The World
While we’re focused on commercial solar in Orange County, the possibilities for widespread solar are pretty significant. Renewable energy overall has never been more popular.
Solar energy is available worldwide, but its availability and effectiveness vary depending on location. The amount of solar energy a location receives depends on its latitude and climate. Areas near the equator, like tropical regions, receive the most direct sunlight and have the best potential for solar energy generation. However, other factors, such as cloud cover, atmospheric conditions, and air pollution, can also impact the availability of solar energy.
Luckily for everyone, advances in solar technology have made it possible to generate significant amounts of solar energy even in regions with less sunlight, such as northern latitudes.
Solar energy has the potential to play a significant role in meeting energy demand all over the world.
And we welcome that fantastic potential.
Final Thoughts On Solar Energy Facts And Commercial Solar
Our list of ten solar energy facts only scratches the surface. Each of these facts contains more in-depth information that we hope we can bring to your attention over time.
For Orange County businesses, solar energy has never been more affordable. It’s a savvy business decision and a green option for the future.
Need more convincing? Get in touch with the expert technicians at REPOWER Orange and start asking any and all questions you may have about solar power, EV chargers in Orange County, and how we can help your business save money and thrive!