The demand for clean energy is at an all-time high, and it’s having a direct impact on the renewable energy sector. In fact, the price of solar energy has decreased by 83% since 2011.
Puerto Rico’s residential solar market grew by 76% in the first quarter of 2020 compared to the same period a year ago. The market value of the solar industry is now up to $9.9 billion.
Puerto Rico continues to lead the United States in terms of solar installations. As of April 2020, Puerto Rico has the 17th largest solar farm in the world. It consists of 144 panels with a capacity of 64.8 kilowatts. That’s enough energy to power up to 74 homes for a whole day.
Puerto Rico is definitely taking the lead in generating solar power, but the United States as a whole is following its lead. The country installed a record-breaking 624 megawatts (MW) of solar capacity in 2020. That’s enough to power 400,000 homes for a whole day.
Overall, the renewable energy sector grew by 23% in 2020. That’s according to Grand View Research, a market research company. The energy sector accounted for 17% of the global market in 2020. Growth is primarily being fueled by large utilities that have invested heavily in renewable energy. These companies see a future where less fossil fuels are used and more clean energy is produced.
Why Are People Flocking To Solar Energy In Puerto Rico?
The price of solar power has decreased by 83% since 2011, which has made it more accessible to a larger audience. In order to understand why solar power has become so popular in Puerto Rico, we must look back at the island’s history. In fact, Puerto Rico was originally founded as a place for free people of color. It’s not just that the cost of solar power has dropped, although that certainly doesn’t hurt.
In the 1960s and ‘70s, Puerto Rico was hit with a series of hurricanes that destroyed much of the island’s infrastructure. The storms also left a large number of people without a home. Those people were given assistance, including free rent, which further encouraged them to adopt a more environmentally friendly way of living.
In 2018, Puerto Rico was officially split from the United States. Once again, the price of solar energy dropped, making it more affordable for potential customers. With an average monthly cost of $0.38 for residential customers and $0.75 for commercial ones, compared to the $13.33 average annual cost in the United States, solar power is definitely becoming more attractive.
The Island’s 17th Largest Solar Farm
Apart from becoming more affordable, the other major reason behind the shift to solar power in Puerto Rico is due to the island’s growing population. In fact, Puerto Rico has the 17th largest solar farm in the world. It was built in June 2019 and spans across 144 panels with a capacity of 64.8 kilowatts. This means it’s enough energy to power up to 74 homes for a whole day.
This isn’t just one big solar farm, either. The island has several others, including one that was just built last year. These solar farms help reduce the island’s reliance on fossil fuels and reduce its carbon footprint. In the future, this may even help improve air quality.
Puerto Rico As A Testing Ground For Alternative Energy
One of the reasons why renewable energy is so popular in Puerto Rico is because it’s a testing ground for alternative energy. The island has been working on transitioning away from fossil fuels for a long time. In August 2019, the government passed a law that requires all public transportation to be carbon-free by 2045.
This is a huge step in the right direction. It shows that Puerto Rico is serious about reducing its reliance on fossil fuels and expanding its use of clean energy. This also means that renewable energy providers can experiment with new technologies and innovative ideas without worrying about whether or not they’ll ever be needed.
Going Green Isn’t Just About The Cost
One of the biggest misconceptions about going green is that it’s only about saving money. People assume that installing solar panels will cost more than paying for energy delivered by traditional means. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, the price of residential solar power has decreased by 83% since 2011.
This is mainly because efficiency has increased, which has led to a decline in the number of solar panels required. Back in 2011, a typical 6kW system consisted of 12 panels. Now, that size has been reduced to 3-4 panels and even then, only certain models. This is great for the environment because it means fewer solar panels will be thrown away. It also means fewer resources will be consumed in the production of new panels. This, in turn, reduces the impact on the environment. It also helps people save money.
This is one of the primary reasons why the demand for solar power is on the rise. People want to go green, but they don’t want to sacrifice energy savings just to do it. With the price of solar power continuing to decline, this may be the perfect time for everyone to get in on the action.