Monday, October 20, 2008

Solar Power to the rescue

The US economy needs to be rescued. Will solar power be the answer?

Apparently the congress believes it will. The house had proposed a bill to rescue our financial institutions, but the plan failed to garner enough votes. The senate then added many other provisions, including extending the federal tax credit for solar installations, and miraculously, the bill passed and was signed into law by the president...

I'm not saying that the solar tax credit is the only reason the bill passed. But clearly, the senators who wrote the bill see a link between rescuing the economy and spurring the growth of alternative energy. Personally, I believe that alternative energy will be one of the highest growth sectors in the US economy, and will be the sector that gets our economic engines humming again.

The extension of the federal tax credit goes a long way towards making solar power accessible to all Americans. Although it goes into effect on Jan 1, 2009, you can install a solar system on your home, have it turned on in January, and still qualify for the federal goverment paying 30% of the cost of the system in the form of a tax credit.

I work for Clary Solar ( A company that has been operating in San Diego California since 1954. About a year ago they branched out into residential and commercial solar installation in San Diego and have been doing quite well. I am their representitive for the San Francisco bay area market.

I had been in the semiconductor industry for 17 years leading high performance microprocessor development at Digital Equipment Corp., AMD, and others. Recently I made the transition to solar and found that some of my engineering, analysis, and management background are directly applicable to the solar power industry.

I have been very interested in alternative energy for quite some time and looked into a number of other technologies. Solar stood out as the technology that's ready to go commercial in a big way. It makes sense from every angle that you look at it, whether it be the economics, environmental, political, social, etc..

In the coming weeks, I will be sharing with you my experiences in selling and installing solar power systems. I will discuss technologies that are available, the financial case for going solar, the benefits to the environment, the reasons people are "going solar", and many other experience I have while working in this vibrant new industry!

Stay tuned for the solar experience.