7 Facts about Solar power

Reader's Digest Editors

Renewable energy sources are predicted to be the fastest-growing energy source over the next 20 years. Solar power and the renewable energy sector as a whole are seeing rapid growth, driven by falling costs and global energy demands. But there is still a lot you might not know - check out our 7 facts on solar power that may surprise you and take a look at a how investors could potentially benefit from the phenomenal growth of the clean energy sector.

 

  1. Solar energy is the most abundant energy source on Earth

Did you know that the solar energy hitting earth from the sun’s rays in just one hour would be enough to power the whole planet and meet all our energy needs for an entire year!

For example, if 25,000 sq. miles were covered with solar panels it would generate enough power to supply the United States for 1 year.

  1. Solar energy costs have fallen by 100% since 2000

Government legislation is driving the push towards renewable energy, this has led to a rise in installations meaning the cost of solar energy installation keeps falling.

The UK is bound by the national Climate Change Act, which demands an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas pollution by 2050 (1) and is committed to cutting carbon emissions to combat climate change. Last October the UK government said that up to £557m would be made available for less established renewable electricity projects as part of its ‘Clean Growth Strategy’ to drive economic growth and clean up the energy system.

  1. Solar energy is now cheaper than all fossil fuels

It would seem that turning to renewables for new power generation is not simply an environmentally right decision to make but a much more cost efficient, smart and economic decision to make too.

The current cost for fossil fuel power generation ranges from around 4p to 12p per kWh. By 2020, IREA predicted renewables will cost between 2p and 7p, with the best onshore wind and solar projects expected to deliver electricity by 2p or less next year (2).  And these costs are only going to get cheaper as solar technology continues to improve.

  1. Solar energy panels can now last for 40 years

Not only can solar energy panels that are produced and installed today last this long but they require little or no maintenance cost too. As panel technology improves, it is easy to replace the old panels with newer more productive ones. In fact, the infrastructure around a solar plant has a lot of value and once it is in place, it has a very long and effective lifespan.

  1. China is now the world leader in solar energy

China is home to some of the biggest solar farms in the World and now has more solar energy capacity than any other country in the World too - at a colossal 130 gigawatts. To give you an example of its capacity, if it was generating electricity all at once, it could power the whole of the UK several times over.

China continues to increase its investment in Renewable energy and plans to spend £292 billion by 2020 and provide 13 million jobs. This investment comes at a time when the relationship between air pollution and public health grows increasingly alarming.

  1. Over 60% of new energy production in 2017 was from renewable energy sources

In 2007 renewable technologies accounted for 23% of new power capacity in the UK. Last year, this figure reached 61%, setting a new record of 157GW, dwarfing the 70GW of net fossil fuel generating capacity added in 2017. (3) Latest figures from the National Grid show that around half of the UK’s electricity last summer was generated from non-fossil fuel sources. (4)

Not only is Solar and other renewable energy sources now more cost effective, it is becoming a big part of the overall energy mix. 

  1. Solar energy is the fastest energy source to install

When disaster strikes no other energy source can be installed or repaired faster than solar energy. A perfect example is what happened in Puerto Rico in September 2017 when hurricane Maria left the island without electrical power. Companies such as Tesla and Sunrun brought power to 26% of households for a fraction of the cost just seven weeks after the hurricane hit.

Investing in Solar energy and the renewable energy market

 The rapid spread of renewable energy is a bright spot in the global energy transition towards a low carbon economy and with solar and renewable energy becoming cheaper and more popular it will perhaps become too deliciously inexpensive for investors to ignore.

The Main Benefits of Renewable Energy Investment:

- Fixed annual returns

- Ethical & Environmentally sound Investment

- Portfolio diversification

- Excellent for Pension as income stream is predictable

- Fully insured for any loss of income for duration

To download your free Investment Guide Pack, click here

Investors keen to gain exposure to renewable energy must remember that this is still an emerging sector, if you’re unsure where to invest, consider seeking professional advice.

This article is brought to you by CX Renewables. Our profitable clean energy projects protect your capital whilst returning annual income over the medium to long term period. As Low Risk Investments, CX Solar Bonds are secured by assets and backed by solid Government contracts for a guaranteed market at fixed prices.

Sources:

1: https://www.theccc.org.uk/archive/aws/IA&S/CCC_IAS_Tech-Rep_2050Target_Interactive.pdf

2: https://www.irena.org/publications/2018/Jan/Renewable-power-generation-costs-in-2017

3: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-41397133

4: https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/ieo/