It’s a good time to look into solar energy for your home or business

April 29, 2011 | By | 1 Reply More

At the recent Earth Day celebration in St. Louis, Chris Klarer of Advanced Energy Solutions offered to give a video statement on the advantages of solar. In addition to producing clean and sustainable energy, there are substantial tax advantages for owners of businesses and homes.

I went to the site of AES and used its calculator, determining that a solar system on my roof could provide more than half of my family’s electricity. This was quite interesting, of course. What made things even more interesting are those tax advantages.  In addition to talking with Chris, I discussed these tax advantages with another a man who was promoting solar at his own booth (he was not selling anything, onlypromoting the use of solar panels). His numbers were even rosier than those suggested by Chris — click on the thumbnail to see how he reduced the cost of a $12,000 installation to only about $2,000.

I am, indeed, going to look further into solar electric for my home, but here is a hurdle: I live in an historic neighborhood, and I suspect that I’m going to have a struggle over getting a permit. I’ll make my best arguments and see how far I get – – it would seem that there should be a way–after all, the state of Missouri is offering tax credits for solar, making it official public policy that solar electric is to be encouraged.  I’ll report back after I learn more.

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Category: Energy, Environment, Sustainable Living

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. Jim Razinha says:

    I've been watching solar for a couple years now – actually, I'll been watching for more than 20 years, only a lot more seriously in the past three – and systems have come down from $7-$9 per watt (installed) to under $5/W. This past week I found 230 W panels in Google for $692 and 200 W panels for $429 – that's without shipping, inverters, installation, etc. and the efficiencies vary, but the costs are definitely coming down.

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