It is no secret as to why solar is becoming increasingly more widespread — it is more affordable and therefore more accessible. The cost of an average residential energy system has dropped roughly around 50% within the last decade and current utility-scale costs are highly competing with all other forms of energy. Other incentives along with the gradual decrease in overall system pricing such as tax credits have also made the allure of solar energy so much greater in recent years. In 2019, owners of solar PV systems were given a 30% claim for credit and will drop to 26% in 2020. Even with this slight decrease in credit percentage, the value of solar energy compared to other forms of non-sustainable energy sources over time is unmatched.
But can these aspects and incentives compete with other societal and environmental factors facing homeowners?
The novel Coronavirus impacted life across the nation and world which can be seen greatly through the economic repercussions faced. Industries of all kinds endured unforeseen conditions, the solar industry included. Companies lacked the need for positions due to industry ailments such as supply chain delays and restrictions on tax equity markets. With previous consistency in growth within the industry, this majorly set back solar energy function in the country especially with the government not installing almost 37% less solar capacity than previous years. Although there was a stunt in the growth of the solar industry as it faced adversity throughout 2020, the opportunity for an upward change is present.
While the industry as a whole may have faced these repercussions, residential solar still needed services such as necessary maintenance and installations as consumers began prioritizing beneficial investments and exploring sustainable options for lifestyle. While it will not be overnight that the world begins to flourish economically again, the focus on aspects pertaining to the well-being of the future — whether that be of homeowners’ savings or of the earth for younger generations —has greatly increased in recent years.
The effects of climate change are not something that will be forgotten in 2021 as many areas around the world and right here in the country are still dealing with the threat and consequences of forest fires every day. The younger generations who are now a part of the workforce and even homeowners are taking a stand for the future by making changes to the ‘old school’ lifestyle that is not as environmentally conscious.
The priority to incorporate paper straws and reusable water bottles showcase this change, but the biggest example of this commitment to major lifestyle changes is the rapid increase in solar panels appearing on roofs and wind farms popping up as an alternative form of energy. “The share of homeowners considering getting solar panels is up from 40% in 2016 and has especially increased among those living in the South Atlantic states ranging from Delaware to Florida.”
With newfound socioeconomic factors and the COVID-19 vaccination bringing hope for a near-future end to the pandemic, it shows positive growth for the solar energy industry.
 “Guide to Federal Tax Credit for Residential Solar PV,” energy.gov (U.S Department of Energy, January 2020), https://www.energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2020/01/f70/Guide%20to%20Federal%20Tax%20Credit%20for%20Residential%20Solar%20PV.pdf, 1.  “COVID-19 Impacts on the U.S. Solar Industry,” SEIA, accessed January 11, 2021, https://www.seia.org/research-resources/covid-19-impacts-us-solar-industry#:~:text=Due%20to%20the%20COVID%2D19,forecasted%20%E2%80%93%20a%2038%25%20decline.  Brian Kennedy and Cary Lynne Thigpen, “More U.S. Homeowners Say They Are Considering Home Solar Panels,” Pew Research Center (Pew Research Center, August 14, 2020), https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/12/17/more-u-s-homeowners-say-they-are-considering-home-solar-panels/.
Solar Opportunities is a Full-Service Solar Consultation, Design and Install company services Pennsylvania. Our cutting edge design platform enables inquiring minds to access all the information they need to know in a clear, transparent fashion in a short amount of time. Systems can be designed from satellite imagery for residential, commercial and agricultural properties. For more information, visit us at https://www.solaropportunitiesllc.com, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 570-637-6384.