Solar Energy

May/30/2009 12:59PM
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Should you invest in solar energy? Our government will make solar happen in this country. By mandate, every power company has a specific goal to produce certain percentages of their power by alternative energy by a given date. And, the percentages go up every year. Our government is going to penalize any power company that doesn’t switch to alternative energy and doesn’t have nuclear when they pass cap and trade. Conventional power generators will need to buy carbon credit offsets from the government. So, one way or the other, you will get solar energy.

Statistics say solar energy production has grown about 40% annually over the past five years and is currently worth roughly $15 billion. This, from the Solar Energy Industries Association. What did $15 billion buy? It now accounts for an astounding 0.01% of the worldwide electrical production. Let’s see, if the world invested another $135 billion they could pump that up to a whole 1%. Even more impressive. Why isn’t more being invested in solar? Simple, up to now, you haven’t been forced to pay for this expensive energy source. But, your time is up, the choice is not yours, it’s in the hands of your, oh so, wise and capable government. They always know what you need to do far better than you.

Come on now, Al Gore has told you time and time again that the sun emits 2,000 times more energy than the world consumes. If we only had 10,000 square miles of solar photovoltaic cells, we would cover our county’s needs. If every American had 500 square feet on a while roof(per Dr. Chu, head of the EPA), we could generate 70% of our needs. Combine the two and we could sell power to Mexico and Canada.

Here are the states that are leading the charge for solar. California, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Washington. Notice anything about these states? Have you read much about them lately? They are all going broke. In California, subsidies and credits can absorb half the typical $25,000 cost of home solar panels. Demand is soaring and there is a waiting list. Way to go California. Soon, taxpayers in Texas will be paying for the solar panels in California to eliminate the waiting list.

Here’s the really good news, government rebates and incentives drop the cost of solar to 22-40 cents per kilowatt-hour. Compared with your current cost of 11 cents, this is a real steal. I’ll bet you can hardly wait until you have to buy 40 cent power. Don’t worry, the government will subsidize the cost of solar power, just like governments have all over the world.

In Germany, for example, the solar market is 55%. The German government pays as much as 40% of the cost of building solar energy systems. China gives a 50% aid. Japan 50%. It’s great, it will be just like ethanol. Ethanol would never have worked without subsidies. It doesn’t save any energy and it drives corn prices up worldwide, but it gets votes. Getting votes is how it works.

Big solar production facilities in the desert use huge amounts of water. Did we not just have fear mongering about running out of water? Is California not short on water today? No problem, Arizona will use solar to heat water to make steam to make electricity to ship across the desert. Yes, it will require putting up towers across the pristine desert. Haven’t most communities buried power lines to eliminate the eyesores of towers? Yes, but this is the desert. The cost of this Arizona power, seven times the nuclear power produced in Arizona today. Government subsidies, you bet. Higher power bills, you bet.

So, regardless of where you live your power bills will be going up to accommodate replacing nuclear and coal with solar. What are your options? None. Don’t bother writing your president, your senator, or your congressman. You will just get a form letter reminding you of the dangers of carbon. Here are some real options. Stick some solar panels on your roof. It’s like Blagojevich putting Burris in Obama’s senate seat. Since Burris is Afro American, no one could stop Burris from going in, even Obama. Since solar panels are as politically correct as Burris, not one of your neighbors, not your zoning laws, not even your CC&R’s can stop you from putting eyesores on your roof that only your neighbors can see. Do it, have some fun with it, be on the right side of a wrong issue for a change. It will relieve stress in your life and put it in the neighbors’ yards.

You could buy a natural gas generator and make your own power. Natural gas is going down in price as more and more is discovered in the U.S. You could double down and run your fleet of cars on the natural gas. The noise is a bit loud with a generator, but again, you are being a patriot.

Last suggestion, and probably the best, invest in companies that are going to take advantage of your elected officials. With projects like solar, when the U.S. government gets involved, margins go sky high. These companies will take your tax dollars and then produce power at 5 times the current cost. The only chance you have of getting either back are buying stock in the ones that steal the most from you and your government. Do some research and buy some stock in the ones that will do the most business here. It’s the best hedge.

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