As far as renewable sources of energy are concerned, the sun proves to be an excellent source. Compared to other forms of renewable energy, solar energy is definitely the one we can harness most easily. Conventional forms of energy, especially fossil fuels, are now scarcely available and after a few years down the line, human beings will have no choice other than to use renewable sources of energy for day-to-day activities.
Solar energy is available for free, for as long as the sun is up, without emitting any harmful gases and never runs out. However, the technology used to trap the sun's energy and convert it into usable form is not implemented on a large scale. People are still using other forms of energy, like crude oil, wood, coal, etc. that emit harmful gases that cause pollution.
There is no doubt that solar energy is one of the most important sources of renewable and clean energy, but like any other forms of energy, solar energy also has its own advantages and disadvantages. Let us discuss each one of them below.
The number one advantage of using solar energy is that although the production of solar panels involves use of toxic metals like lead, cadmium and mercury that produces carbon dioxide, studies have shown that energy generated by the sun reduces the emissions of harmful air pollutants by a considerable amount when compared to conventional energies produced by fossil fuels. This results in less pollution.
If solar energy is harnessed properly, the energy generated by it can provide the entire Earth with more energy than it actually needs. Studies have shown that our planet Earth receives 84 Terawatts of power from the Sun while the global need is just 12 Terawatts.
Other advantages are: the process of producing electricity through solar energy is clean and noise free; installing solar panels in remote locations is usually economical than installing high voltage wires; technologies required to generate power from solar energy can make the users less dependent on energy generated through fossil fuels; once you start using this energy for your daily activities like heating, lighting, etc. your energy bills are likely to go down.
The biggest disadvantage is the high initial cost of installing solar panels that harness the sun's energy. Although the investment is high, once installed the solar panels and solar cells will generate free electricity for its users that will recover the high cost over the coming years. Also, new inventions in this field have made solar panels less costly. Due to this, the world will witness a definite increase in the use of solar energy.
The installation of solar panels or cells requires a lot of space. Hence, this can be unfavorable for places where available space is at a premium. In addition to this, solar energy is useful only when the weather is sunny and not cloudy. During the night, solar panels become useless. To overcome this demerit, solar battery chargers are used that store this energy for use during nights or cloudy weather.
As you can see, there are more advantages of solar energy than disadvantages. Hence, installing solar panels to meet the energy needs is always a good idea, not only for the present generation but also for the coming generations.
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