For some time now, we’ve had the technology to comfortably make the transition away from fossil fuel based energy. Unfortunately, it was not convenient economically. Solar panels and wind turbines were quite expensive and offered very few incentives to those brave enough to invest in this emerging market.
Fortunately, thanks to renewable energy programs, who offer loan guarantees, a rising threat to the established power companies has become a reality. Plants fired by coal are rapidly losing their market share and costs for renewable energy are declining just as quickly. Now the private sector is jumping on board, so we could see some true innovation in our near future, but it won’t come without a fight.
We Can Make The Switch
When it comes to innovation in energy we use every day, politics matters a great deal. For a while it’s mostly been municipal governments, regional transportation agencies, the military, and average people who have been helping to foster green technologies through their purchases.
Once the technologies were proven, the costs began to decline and investment in green technologies began to ramp up. Now private-sector companies are doing the same. Some of the world’s largest companies are putting up plants, and have made deals with utilities to buy the output.
Each one of these large-scale breakthroughs is bringing awareness to the green revolution and taking profits away from power produced from fossil fuels.
The Net-Metering Debate
Now we’re entering a new stage. The renewable energy market is becoming so efficient that power generators, such as roof top solar panels, have the ability to offer excess energy back to the grid. This has started a new wave of regulations over the generation and distribution of renewable energy.
Net-metering refers to the policies that can vary significantly by country and by state or province, but refer to a person’s ability to generate and offer electricity to their community.
The established electric companies, who are watching their market share slip away, are upset that tax payers are using the exciting electric grid to transport their excess energy to the rest of their community. They argue that they had a role to play in the creation of the current infrastructure and simply want to level the playing field. They want to ensure that all of those who use the electric grid, whether to consume or to generate power, are paying for its upkeep.
We must be vigilant in blocking any policies that seek to hinder the growth of renewable energies, in support for companies who failed to meet consumer demands. We must play an active role in municipal, regional, and national policy making to ensure the switch to green energies is an easy one, free of corruption.
Share this story to spread awareness of renewable energies success and their recent struggles. Only an aware populous can ensure that the green revolution will prevail.
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