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Sunshine in your pocket



Solarizing By Jeff Voacolo

With oil prices rising above $110 a barrel, it’s time to take advantage of the most powerful power plant that rises every morning and sets every night. This nuclear reactor is so powerful that one hour of sunlight, if captured and turned into energy, could power the world economy for one year.

People marvel at the beautiful sunrise and sunset every day, but miss the sheer brilliance of the sun’s ability to change their lives,


Solar technology has become so affordable that not using this energy source equates to a missed opportunity to save money for many years to come.


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You are missing out on an opportunity to power your home or business and hedge your utility bill for a lifetime. You miss out on very low interest rates if you want to purchase this system, and another missed opportunity of taking advantage of the 26 percent investment tax credit the United States has so graciously given homeowners and businesses for investing in solar energy.


There are several programs that allow you to save money— with lower utility rates than the power company can provide— through no-money-down power purchase agreements.


When a typical homeowner purchases a standard-size solar energy system for their home, their average monthly savings can be in the $300 range. This average system has a four-and-a-half-year pay-off with subsequent savings for more than 30 years.


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On top of this, if you take the 26 percent tax savings on the money borrowed to purchase a solar system, it will direct tax savings to revenue earned. Businesses can take advantage of these programs that allow them to reinvest their savings in building the business instead of forking money out to the utility company.


Solar energy proved its value during Typhoon Soudelor in 2015 and Typhoon Yutu in 2018, both of which knocked down the power systems in the Northern Marianas. Backing up your solar energy system with a battery component will give you total energy security.


With the grid instability on Guam, where even mild winds can cause blackouts, becoming your own stand-alone power plant can give you comfort and power security even amid a major storm.


A new power plant is expected to go online in 2024, but this will not solve the transmission and distribution problems we are faced with.


Energy is transforming before our eyes with batteries becoming more powerful, with warranties that cover more than 10 years.


Solar energy panels and inverters that transform sunlight to workable voltages are extremely efficient now.


When you look up at the sky and admire the glory of the sun, remember that you are looking at this marvelous nuclear reactor that can give you the freedom to control your own energy source throughout your lifetime.


Jeffrey Voacolo is the vice president and chief operations officer of Generation Renewable Inc. Send feedback to jvoacolo@micronesiarenewableenergy.com




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