The US Department of Energy has been given a mission of reducing fossil fuel dependence and pollution in the country. Its answer is the Million Solar Roof Initiative.
Million Solar Roof Initiative – US Department of Energy
For the past 20 years, the Department of Energy has been trying to motivate private industry to go solar. This motivation, however, has been formally in the form of providing free education on solar platforms and how to install them on homes, buildings and power plants. As you may imagine, private industry has been less than enthusiastic about such efforts, but all of that is starting to change.
Congress funds the Department of Energy and Congress is unhappy with the state of alternative energy sources. Further, the federal political monster is also starting to react to all the heat being generated internationally by our massive production of greenhouse gases. In reaction, the proverbial whip has been laid to the Department of Energy and renewable energy is the hot subject.
Greenhouse gases are produced by fossil fuels. The gases rise into the atmosphere and effectively act as insulation, which heats up the Earth. Rising temperatures are now melting glaciers through the world and are expected to start melting the polar ice caps. As this occurs, water levels will rise around the world and climatic changes are expected to be harsh. It is expected that the past hurricane season will be the least of our problems.
In pursuing the Million Solar Roofs Initiative, the Department of Energy hopes to reduce the production of greenhouse gases. If a million solar platforms are put up, the pollutant savings will be equivalent to the emissions produced by over 800,000 cars each year.
To make the Million Solar Roofs initiative viable, there has to be an economic component. Now there is. Congress has issued large tax credits for businesses and individuals that go solar. Rebate programs have also been initiated to help reduce the cost of purchasing a solar platform. Indeed, California just went forward with a 3.2 billion dollar rebate program on it's own. Finally, the federal government is now providing solar platform loans as part of mortgage packages through entities such as Fannie Mae and FHA. Throw in concepts like net metering [selling power to utilities from your home or business], and going solar has never made so much sense.
After years of playing lip service to non-fossil fuel energy, the federal government finally is getting serious about the proposal. The Million Solar Roofs Initiative is one such step.