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Heather Mosley | SBJ

Our Bipartisan Energy Dependence Solution (Sponsor Letter)

SBJ Economic Growth Survey: Capital

Posted online

A  trademark of U.S. politics in the last decade is energy dependence, efficiency and affordability. Rightly so. For decades, we have been approaching the crossroads we find ourselves at today where access to energy is costly and our usage demands continue to increase.

It seems any proposal set forth by either political party is abhorrent to the other. Most of the debate historically has centered around natural gas, domestic coal and foreign oil. Every solution being discussed at the federal level is expensive and requires entities and nations that are known for moving at glacial speeds to agree and move forward in unity, leaving citizens feeling angry, frustrated and powerless.

There is one energy solution that nobody seems to be discussing, which has long been proven for energy independence, efficiency and affordability: solar. Sadly, though, solar energy long ago become a liberal stalwart making it a strangely partisan issue when I personally believe the conservative arguments for solar energy are stronger and indisputable. You don’t have to believe in climate change or global warming to believe that solar is the right investment in our fight for energy independence.

Independence
No other energy affords individual businesses or homeowners the self-reliance and independence from government. In fact, it is one of the few investments you can make that has the potential for your government-owned or regulated utility to pay you back for producing more energy than you use. While you cannot at this time disconnect your business or home from the grid, you can flip the power paradigm and drastically reduce your dependence upon it.

Reliability
Sun is the most reliable source of power that can be harnessed anywhere in the world. Many false myths have been spread about solar panels. However, solar panels do work in the winter, they do withstand hail storms, they do increase resale value, and they have a 40-year or better lifespan. Solar is far from new technology. It’s simply new to the Ozarks.

Financial return
The stock market has an 8% average gain over any 10-year period, whereas solar returns are even greater with an average payoff between five and 10 years. When you invest in the stock market, you’re playing another man’s game. When you invest in solar, you’re playing your own game. Utility-provided power that you rent can be upwards of 12 cents per kilowatt-hour in our area and the cost to own your power with solar is much less. Add the cost efficiency of running the system with cash flow and tax advantages, like credits and depreciation, the financial benefits skyrocket.

Solar is an energy solution that political and fiscal conservatives should be embracing to solve our energy dependence, efficiency and affordability issue.

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