My wife and I decided to put solar panels on our home. They finally were able to be turned on yesterday making this the first full day of solar power generation + use!

It's a 6.6 kW system with 22 panels, estimated to produce 7,850 kWh annually in our location. Electric bills for each of the first two months in our home were less than the estimated value of what our system can produce monthly. This means we will likely have eliminated our electric costs with room to spare. Hooray!

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We need more of this. More individuals choosing to implement renewable energy production methods at home. More effort to reduce energy use where we can, and maximize efficiency when energy is necessary. One home with solar panels could generate electricity for 1+ homes in many locations. Entire neighborhoods could in some circumstances be powered when only a fraction of homes install electric generation capacity.

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If we do this right, we could reduce or eliminate the need for centralized power generation, instead relying on the efficient utilization of locally produced power. I love the idea of getting most electricity through solar, wind, etc. What I don't want to see (and what unfortunately seems to be our reality today) is enormous chunks of land devoted to solar electric generation. Acres and acres of mirrors or solar panels spread across the landscape.

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The need for the grid, however, does not go away. In fact, it must become more robust/reliable. What are some ways this is being accomplished today, that you know of? Are there utility companies focusing more on the transport of electricity rather than generation? Are there companies going to homeowners/businesses and requesting to install solar panels on rooftops?

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