Since the introduction of solar energy, it has gained popularity in the majority of countries all over the world. Over the years, we have witnessed several experiments, myths, and discussions regarding solar energy. The use of solar energy to power the street lights is quite a new concept, and many experts are supporting this idea, but is this idea really worth it? At Compare Solar Quotes, our duty is to make sure that the Australian people get all the necessary and correct information about solar power and solar components. Therefore, in this guide, our solar experts will discuss solar street lighting and its pros and cons.
What is Solar Street Lighting?
Everyone is familiar with street lights, the lights that guide our path on the roads at night. Street lights are a necessity on the roads and are usually powered with electricity that comes from the mains electricity grid. This means that they use the electricity that is generated from non-renewable sources of energy.
By solar street lighting, we refer to street lights that are typically powered using solar energy. Each street light is connected to a small solar panel which powers the light with the electricity generated by absorbing energy from sunlight. This sounds like a great concept and could save a significant amount of energy. However, there are quite a few advantages and disadvantages that are associated with this concept.
Advantages of Solar Street Lighting
Electrical Connection is not Needed
As we discussed above, solar street lights are powered using solar power; thus, there is no need for any electrical connection. This allows people to be free from the hassle of additional wiring and installation. As there is no need for an electrical connection, you can also easily install street lights at any corner you want to. This also saves you from any risks or accidents caused by loose wiring.
One of the biggest advantages of using solar energy is that it is generated by the solar panels and does not import electricity from the mains electricity grid. The majority of electricity in the mains grid is generated using non-renewable sources of energy such as coal, oil, fossil fuels, and so on. On the other hand, solar energy comes from sunlight, which is abundant and renewable. The use of solar energy saves electricity by reducing the amount of electricity imported from the grid.
Solar energy is known to be the cheapest form of electricity all over the world. This is because the energy that comes from the sun is abundant and free as long as the sun is present. When it comes to solar panels, all you have to do is pay for the solar panel installation. Since you will not be using electricity from the grid, the cost of electricity bills will reduce significantly, and you will save money.
We all know that solar panels pay for themselves within a few years of use, and once they successfully pay for themselves, the electricity generation is free as long as the solar panels have the ability to generate electricity.
Helpful for the Environment
One of the top reasons why solar panels gained such popularity all over the world is because it is extremely helpful for the environment. Solar energy is the only source of energy in the world that does not produce any sort of pollutant. This means that it does not create any sort of air or sound pollution. Not only that, but it also does not release any carbon dioxide or greenhouse gases.
Solar energy helps to reduce the carbon footprint and also reduces the effects of greenhouse gases on the environment. Studies and research show that a single solar panel can reduce about 30 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the environment in its lifespan of 30 years.
Even though solar energy generation is free, solar panel installation comes with a high price tag. We save a significant amount of money with solar energy, but the upfront costs cause many people to step back from the idea of installing solar. Switching from regular street lights to solar street lights is quite an expensive investment.
Solar panels require maintenance from time to time in order to make sure that the panels are working at their peak efficiency. Solar panel maintenance typically refers to the cleaning of solar panels to remove dirt, debris, leaves, and so on. The cleaning must be done at least once or twice a year. Cleaning the solar panels for street lights is not an easy task, and you will require professional cleaning services in order to do so. Other than that, you will also have to get the wiring checked by professionals once a year.
Requires consistent Sunlight
As we all know, solar panels require sunlight in order to generate electricity. Solar street lights depend on solar electricity, and in order to generate solar electricity, solar panels must receive sunlight consistently. However, the problem arises on rainy days or on days where there is not enough sunlight to generate the required amount of energy.
There are often instances when the solar panels do not receive adequate sunlight due to shading by trees, buildings, and so on. The solar street lights will not work properly if they do not receive sunlight properly.
As we discussed above, solar street lighting is a great concept, and we have witnessed several experts supporting the concept. However, if we take a look at the pros and cons, then solar street lighting does not seem like a great idea. This is because the lights on the street have to be consistent, and this is something solar panels cannot guarantee. That is why the majority of solar experts suggest that we should stick to the conventional system of street lights.