Amidst concerns that the increasing demand for power could exacerbate carbon emissions known to contribute to the warming of our planet, more and more U.S. homes are switching to electricity from renewable sources.
Figures show that the solar-power market in the country has significantly grown in recent years. The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM Research, for instance, say that homeowners across the country installed 918 megawatts of solar panels during the first half of 2015, which is almost four times the number installed for the whole year of 2010.
In a statement released last month, the White House said that in 2014, the amount of solar energy that the U.S. brought online every three weeks is equivalent to all of 2008. The solar industry likewise added jobs 10 times faster compared with the rest of the economy.
The statement likewise said that the administration is adopting measures to deliver renewable energy and energy efficiency to American households, which could accelerate the country's transition to cleaner sources of energy.
"President Obama is committed to taking responsible steps to address climate change, promote clean energy and energy efficiency, drive innovation, and ensure a cleaner, more stable environment for future generations," the statement reads.
Loans provided by the government allowed power facilities that run on sun's energy to break ground and wind farms to be built.
Many electric consumers appear to have transitioned to using solar power in particular with the growth of the solar power market being attributed to the falling panel prices and subsidies by the government. Since 2010, the average cost of solar electric system has been slashed by half.
Distributed solar prices also dropped 10 to 20 percent last year alone and 44 states currently adopt pricing structures that could increase penetration of distributed energy resources.
Access to clean energy has also become easier. Some consumers who wanted to use solar power could not do so because they live in apartments or condominiums preventing them from installing their own solar arrays. Some homeowners also have roofs that have too much shade or can't simply accommodate solar panels.
With the advent of the community or shared solar, people can now purchase solar power from centrally owned arrays. Community solar is still considered as a relatively small business but it is growing. The Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory forecasted that this could account up to half of the small-scale solar panel market five years from now.
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