Reason No. 1 Why We Need Solar Power

350 chart 0 Reason No. 1 Why We Need Solar Power

One of these days Congress is going to try to pass some kind ofclimate bill, and the word around the Beltway is that politicians withties to the fossil fuel industry will dig their heels deep into theearth’s crust to eviscerate it. 

In other words, if you think the health care brawl was tough, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet (and remember, theSenate passed the health care bill back when it had a filibuster-proofmajority). The climate bill/international treaty we need to stop catastrophicglobal warming is one that rapidly brings atmospheric carbon levels down to 350 ppm.  But the numbers floating around the Hill are more in theneighborhood of 450 ppm or no upward limit at all.  Legislating 350 ppmis the climate equivalent of a single payer health insurance system-it’s what the experts say we need and the pundits say is a politicalnon-starter.

So if we don’t get the climate bill we need, where does that leaveus?  It leaves us at the mercy of private industry (just like the health care bill leaves our well-being in the hands of private insurers). Having just watched Capitalism: A Love Story, that propositionstrikes me as pretty grim indeed.   On the other hand, there are somebusinesses (and we like to think Sungevity is one of them) that aredeeply committed to selling goods and services that help people andbusinesses reduce their carbon footprints, and there’s not a climateskeptic in the world who can stop us.

By bringing solar down to a price that any homeowner can afford,solar companies are driving nothing less than a renewable electricityrevolution.  If the government won’t do it, and the utilities won’t doit, we will…with your help. Become a solar evangelist by tellingeveryone you know about your solar lease, and help homeowners outside of California find local installers or PACE programs that offer assistance with financing.

Solar power alone won’t get us to 350.  But in conjunction with windpower, energy and fuel efficiency, and whatever climate bill or treatydoes eventually pass, solar will be a big part of the solution.

For the rest of this week, I’ll be blogging on the theme of why weneed a solar revolution–even the phytoplankton agree, as we’ll see intomorrow’s post.

–Erica Etelson