Am I green? I'm not sure. I like to think I am, but I don't drive a Prius or anything. Although I am a big recycler. But we don't use those canvas bags at the supermarket religiously either.
In any case, I do agree that we need to do our part to make sure the earth we give to our kids is no worse (or not terribly worse!) than it was when we got it. And the thing about solar panels is that with all the money I'm making, they make it easy for me to feel good about all I'm doing for the environment.
My 5 kW solar panel array is going to provide me with almost 6 kWh of electricity each year for the next 25 years. That’s about 60% of my electricity usage, reducing my electric bill by about $80 monthly. Plus electricity rates have been climbing at 4-5% each year, so my savings will only grow as time goes by. Check out my solar production posts on my blog for my actual monthly savings.
As soon as it was available a few years back, I decided to pay an extra few dollars every month to enroll in NStar’s Green Energy program, which provides 100% of my electricity from renewable sources. I am going to continue with this program but now I’m not just choosing to use green energy generated by somebody else, I’m actually generating my own green energy!
By avoiding power plant emissions, I am reducing my carbon footprint over that 25-year span by over 100 tons of CO2, the equivalent of planting 800 trees. Each year, it will prevent the equivalent of 3 tons of coal or 20,000 cubic feet of natural gas from being burned. Any you know what?
That makes me feel great!
Finally I’m not just complaining about big companies’ and countries’ disregard for our planet’s health and the depletion of its natural resources – I’m taking action. I’m part of the solution!
And not only am I doing something good for my home planet (too corny?), I’m increasing the value of my home as well. If you already know about the huge increase solar panels will have on your home's value, then proceed to the solar company ratings page instead and receive up to $500 in savings.