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  Citizens Must Call on US Govt. to Support Solar Energy


Citizens Must Call on US Govt. to Support Solar Energy

by Hallie Caplan

"While coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power continue to provide profits for industry moguls, the switch to renewable energy will be slow."
I am glad that a recent article covered the brighter aspects of solar energy. I wanted to add just a few more of my own. Converted to electrical power, the amount of sun that hits the US every day is an almost incalculable 385 quadrillion megawatts. Considering that only five megawatts are actually needed to power 500 energy-efficient homes for a full year, it is apparent that the sun provides incredible potential for energy generation.

Clean, renewable solar-generated power offers obvious advantages when compared to coal, oil, natural gas, or nuclear power. Solar is cost-competitive with the dirty energy sources and has none of the negative externalities in the form of health and environmental damage. With no hazardous emissions, solar energy will reduce air pollution and global warming, two of the most pressing and costly environmental issues of our time. Solar energy will help the US on its way to energy independence and, unlike nuclear power, solar energy does not produce any dangerous waste.

While coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power continue to provide profits for industry moguls, however, the switch to renewable energy will be slow. It is up to the citizens of the US to call upon our government to install 250 megawatts of solar power by 2008 and to provide 20 percent of our energy needs with renewable energy by 2020.

Hallie Caplan writes from Washington, DC, where she works with the Greenpeace environmental group.

Copyright © 2005 The Baltimore Chronicle. All rights reserved.

Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.

This story was published on September 1, 2005.

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