Monday, December 13, 2010
Solar Thermal Heating
Solar thermal heating is one of the most cost effective and efficient ways to incorporate the benefits of renewable energy into a building. Because the sun is used to generate heat, the fuel is not only clean, but it is also FREE! That means lower utility bills! Once any higher initial costs of solar system equipment are recovered through avoided electricity costs, the system will only require expenditures for maintenance. Additionally, if a solar heating system is included in the mortgage of a new home, the cost savings and benefits are immediate. It is important to note that equipment and installation costs are significantly defrayed when utilizing federal, state and local incentives and rebates designed to encourage use of energy efficient and renewable energy technologies. (image ref: Caleffi Hydronics)
Solar thermal systems offer a range of applications to reduce energy costs. Solar heating systems are an excellent way to heat swimming pools, a building’s water, and interior space. A typical residential solar water-heating system reduces the need for conventional water heating by about two-thirds. It minimizes the expense of electricity or fossil fuel to heat the water and reduces associated environmental impacts (U.S. Department of Energy).
Solar heating systems are a clean energy technology that not only contribute to the health of the environment, but also protect human health and well-being. They are clean emitting, which means no harmful pollutants such as carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and other wastes are released into the atmosphere. The result is clean air to breathe and a healthy thriving planet for present and future generations.
These benefits all equate to a perfect outcome of lower energy costs, clean environment, improved conditions for human health and welfare, and increased energy security.