Solar power can make coal plants obsolete

Solar power can make coal plants obsolete

Solar electric cells have become increasingly popular as a domestic alternative energy source that lessens our dependence on foreign oil. The expense of producing them has limited their use and, therefore, their ability to bring about change.

A major breakthrough in technology makes “nanosolar” electric cells affordable for domestic use as well as available for use throughout the world.

The private company Nanosolar is building a commercial plant in Palo Alto, Calif., that will produce 215 megawatts of solar electric cells within the year at one-fifth the cost of the old technology. Thereafter, the Palo Alto plant will be able to produce 430 additional megawatts of low-cost photovoltaic cells each year.

These inexpensive solar cells change the way we produce and distribute electricity. This technological breakthrough makes developments like the Montana REAs’ giant 250-megawatt coal-fired Highwood plant in Great Falls obsolete before they are built.

Change is inevitable. It can be meaningful and beneficial, even to an energy system now dependent on oil and fossil fuels, as we find the way to ease this change into the economy and make it compatible for American household, commercial, industrial and public uses.

Nanosolar cells offer international perks. Instead of building the best weapons of mass destruction, we can help bring electrical power into the Third World’s poorest and most remote regions appropriate to local needs and desires. No longer “the ugly Americans,” we will be role models for peaceful energy solutions.

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