With the increasing demand for electric power, the high price of oil and the growing concern for the environment, many businesses are resorting to alternative sources of energy. Among the renewable energy sources, solar energy is a sustainable choice and one that can be used in various applications. Many businesses are now tapping into this alternative source of energy, hoping to benefit from its numerous advantages.
Nigeria, for instance, is one of the countries that largely supply crude oil in the world, but still suffers setbacks in terms of access to electricity for daily usage in homes and industries. A climate change expert’s report shows that only 40 per cent of households in Nigeria are connected to national grid due to decline in power generation and energy lost.
The only renewable energy source Nigeria utilises is hydro-power and biomass; where solar energy is minimally utilised for street lighting, mostly in cities. The country relies also on fossil fuels, natural gas and oil, which are non-renewable – they dwindle, are expensive, and pollute the environment.
Hydroelectric power plants with installed capacity and those coming on stream cumulatively account for roughly 13,000mw but the effectiveness of supply is less than 5000mw across the country.
Benefits of solar energy
Solar power systems will reduce or even eliminate your office building’s electric bill. For big and small businesses, this money-saving can have a tremendous impact. Having a solar power system installed is the equivalent to prepaying for almost 40 years of energy, but at just a fraction of what you are currently paying for electricity. The cost per unit of your current energy costs is likely much higher than what you would spend for solar power. This results in further savings for your business.
Good return on investment
Government incentives and the decrease of solar equipment costs means the utilisation of solar power is a sound investment and a good financial decision for public agencies and businesses. Investing in solar power generates both long-term savings and quick payback.
Low maintenance/high reliability
Solar energy systems from reputable solar providers require virtually no maintenance and operate with no noise. Given the roof structure of many commercial buildings, the access to them is easy. While individual solar cells are fragile, they are encased in a highly tempered and protective glass case, which is framed by non-corrosive aluminium. Because solar panels are exposed to the elements, they are typically very sturdy and built to withstand rain, hail and other weather-related threats. In addition, the photovoltaic cells that make up the panel experience very little break down over time, similar to computer chips. Accordingly, most solar manufacturers offer a full warranty over their solar panels for 20-25 years, which means that once you make the move to solar, you will experience clean electricity for at least 25 years from a system that is just as functional and more reliable than standard utility electricity.