How can solar energy replace fossil fuels?

1 Answer
May 8, 2016

It all comes down to economics and individual choice


The costs of solar energy are coming down as new R&D is undertaken and as more panels are put into commercial use. But solar still tends to be more expensive that say natural gas turbines to generate power.

Some consumers are installing solar, even if the costs are higher - the choice aspect. In some countries, solar is actually close to fossil fuels in terms of costs.

Governments can tilt the playing field in favour of solar by providing subsidies, and/or introducing a carbon tax on all power generations sources (solar would not pay anything, but coal and natural gas would). Additionally, some tech companies like Google, Apple, Microsoft are installing renewable energy sources (solar and wind) to power their large server farms - this is a choice they are making.