For many years, environmentalists have touted the benefits of solar energy from a “green” perspective, thanks to the corresponding reduction in fossil fuel use that accompanies a solar installation. However, for most of that time, solar energy was essentially a “feel good” project—it did not provide significant cost savings. Fortunately, that is no longer true.
Solar does not provide an immediate return on investment, but it does pay for itself over time. In fact, solar has become so economically sensible that some companies recoup their investments in as few as four years. Such a rapid return often includes federal and state tax incentives, and the consultants at Greystone work closely with their clients to ensure every available penny of incentives is recaptured. If solar panels are installed as part of a roof replacement or major repair, it can be even more cost-effective.
Why Solar, Now?
All buildings and properties consume electricity, and the main aim with solar power generation is to reduce that expenditure. With solar panels on the roof, freely available sunlight can be converted to energy—electricity in its simplest form. That electricity can then power any of a building’s electrical systems, from parking lot lights to machinery and office computers.
The solar industry is now very mature, and the technology has advanced to the point that solar is the single least expensive way to generate electricity on a kilowatt-hour basis. In areas like Atlanta, which have more than 200 sunny days per year, the return on solar is even greater than the national average.
When Greystone works with its clients on an alternative energy plan, we consider all the options from a strictly financial perspective. Wind, solar, nuclear, liquid natural gas and geothermal energy are all on the table, but solar almost always wins out.
Think of it this way. If Duke Energy and Georgia Power are buying solar companies, shouldn’t you be investing in it for your firm’s future?