What are the Environmental Benefits of solar power?
Of the total energy consumed in America, about 39% is used to generate electricity. Therefore, electricity consumption is an important portion of a consumer’s environmental footprint. All forms of electricity generation have some level of environmental impact.
Photovoltaic generation PV produces no air pollution, no hazardous waste, no noise, and it requires no transportable fuels. The process directly converts the sun’s energy into useful electrical power without harmful by-products. Even when the emissions related to solar cell manufacturing are taken into account the amount of carbon dioxide generated is on a small fraction of the amount spewed from a conventional coal-fired power plant.
The reduction of greenhouse gas emissions is the most significant environmental benefit of PV use. Using sunlight to generate electricity is clean, quiet and limitless. PV systems do not create carbon dioxide emissions or other greenhouse gases. So, using solar PV energy allows you to create power without creating carbon dioxide or releasing pollutants that contribute to global warming.
Solar PV panels generate power without the need to burn any fossil fuels. Electricity from renewable resources such as solar generally does not contribute to climate change or local air pollution since no fuels are combusted in these processes. This results in conservation of our finite fossil-fuel resources for current and future generations.
Finally, the sun is an almost infinite source of power, providing energy nearly every day. This is an advantage over other “limited” energy sources like coal and nuclear power.